DCSIMG

Santa hands over petition

Far right is MP John Mann and council leader Coun Simon Greaves pictured with the ambulance protest campaigners.  The two are holding all the petitions and consultation responses collected in protest against the proposed closures of the ambulance stations in Bassetlaw. Also pictured is Coun Adele Mumby, Coun Ian Campbell, Coun Jo White and the SOS campaigners  (w121217-1a)

Far right is MP John Mann and council leader Coun Simon Greaves pictured with the ambulance protest campaigners. The two are holding all the petitions and consultation responses collected in protest against the proposed closures of the ambulance stations in Bassetlaw. Also pictured is Coun Adele Mumby, Coun Ian Campbell, Coun Jo White and the SOS campaigners (w121217-1a)

Santa and his helpers delivered a petition bearing thousands of names to East Midlands Ambulance Service HQ.

Around 18,300 people have signed the petition in opposition to EMAS’ plans to close Worksop and Retford ambulance stations.

The consultation, which ended on Monday, lasted for three months, during which people made their views clear.

“This is the largest petition we have ever had,” said Bassetlaw MP John Mann.

“We have collected 18,300 signatures so far and they are still coming in.”

“It shows the view of people in Bassetlaw. I think EMAS will have to listen to this and reverse their decision. The message to (EMAS chief executive) Phil Milligan is simple - keep our ambulance stations open.”

Unions like the GMB have also called for further consultation to provide more detail before decisions can be made by ambulance workers.

Colin Todd, GMB organiser, said they were not against change.

“GMB feel there is too much too soon and the brakes should be applied,” he said.

“We feel that before anything is implemented that a further round of public and staff consultation is needed with much more detail being available so we can make informed suggestions.”

The EMAS Being The Best consultation proposes to close 66 ambulance stations across the region, replacing them with 13 ‘super hubs’ and 131 community stand-by points.

Under the plans, Worksop and Retford ambulance stations would close. The nearest hub, where vehicles would be kept, cleaned and maintained, would be at King’s Mill Hospital in Mansfield.

Three community stand-by points would serve Bassetlaw, based in Retford, Worksop and Langold.

EMAS says this will give patients the best service possible by improving response times and ensuring the right level of clinician attends each call.

It has said it will listen to all the feedback received. A report will then be produced and reviewed by the EMAS trust board on 10th January. Any decision is likely to be reached on 28th January at the earliest.

 

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