Emergency services adopt contingency plans for tomorrow’s national strike

EMERGENCY services have put contingency plans in place ahead of tomorrow’s planned national strike.

Members of Unison, which includes police staff, are among those who may be taking part in strike activity against proposed changes to public sector pensions.

Over the past few weeks the force has put plans in place to ensure critical services and business as usual is maintained in the event of police staff strikes.

Detective Superintendent Paul Fullwood said: “The force fully supports people’s right to protest and we are aware that members of police staff may be striking tomorrow.

“We have contingency plans in place to ensure critical services are maintained.

“As part of this planning we have provided training to staff to ensure they can carry out roles in critical areas such as custody, the force control room and police service centre.

“We have also cancelled police officer rest days to ensure we have sufficient resources to maintain business as usual.

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“As well as ensuring our day-to-day policing activity we will also be running a policing operation to maintain public safety during proposed demonstrations across the county.”

The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) will be using a “comprehensive tried and tested’ contingency plan but bosses are urging Huntingdonshire residents to only call 999 in emergencies.

Alan Murray, director of service delivery, said: “A considerable amount of contingency planning has taken place in preparation for Wednesday. As always we are urging the public to ring for an ambulance only in an emergency. If you are experiencing chest pains, have difficulty in breathing or someone is having a suspected stroke, please call for an ambulance immediately.

“If your condition can be treated by other NHS services then this will free up ambulances to get to someone who could be in a real life-threatening situation so please think before you dial 999. Our priority is to ensure we continue to answer emergency calls to those patients in the greatest need.”