SINGAPORE – SCDF Singapore officers are exposed to vulgarities, threats and even physical violence during their duties.
The SCDF revealed on Thursday (December 13) that 26 cases of abuse of frontline officers have been reported so far this year, an increase of 23 in the whole of last year.
The upward trend began in 2016 when 20 cases of abuse were reported.
Paramedic Sergeant Jeremy Liang was put in a cessation by a patient and also tried to beat another member of his ambulance team after they found the patient on the ground at a Punggol flat in January last year.
"While we were taking their blood pressure (in the ambulance), they started a punch, but it did not work," said Sgt Liang, 32, who had some neck pain when they took the person to the hospital. "Whatever happens, they are still my patient."
The patient was later imprisoned for three months.
Emergency Medical Technician Corporal Timothy Chua, had a packet of rice thrown at him in an ambulance while in October last year he was a full-time national soldier.
The patient also threatened him with his walking stick as he swung vulgarities and was later sentenced to 10 weeks in prison.
"This is the more extreme case (of abuse), but it is a minority," said Cpl Chua, 24.
Operational management of SCDF Daniel Seet said that the organization uses a "zero tolerance" approach when it comes to abuse against officials and does not hesitate to report the perpetrators to the police.
"Although most people appreciate what we do, there is unfortunately a minority who physically or verbally abused our frontliners," he said. "The SCDF will endeavor to protect our officers from such unacceptable behavior, which prevents them from performing their duties and can delay the medical treatment of patients."