EMT suspended for taking sick child to hospital

Ellenville First Aid and Rescue Squad voted to suspend squad leader Stephen Sawyer so he resigned.
By Evan Bleier   |  Dec. 30, 2013 at 2:56 PM
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After the Ellenville First Aid and Rescue Squad voted to suspend 20-year-old squad leader Stephen Sawyer for violating the rules by driving a 4-year-old who was having seizures to the hospital, he opted to resign.

Squad policy states that an individual must be 21 to drive the ambulance, but Sawyer admittedly deviated from the rules when he was alone at headquarters and an emergency call came in.

"I wouldn't have been able to sleep at night or go to school knowing there's a 4-year-old suffering," Sawyer said.

When the Ellenville squad's board of directors found out what had happened, they voted 4-3 to suspend Sawyer for 60 days and revoke his spot on the communications committee. Sawyer was upset with the decision and resigned immediately.

Ellenville First Aid and Rescue Squad board member John Gavaris said that Sawyer’s suspension wasn’t just related to this incident. "It seems very black and white and it's not very black and white," Gavaris said. "This is the type of story that the public doesn't need to be told. There's no value in this story other than shock value and gossip."

Sawyer claims the board never mentioned a "culmination of different incidents" and he’s only been in minor trouble with the squad on one other occasion.

"As far as policy wise, the guys and girls on the board need to rethink their policies for the good of the community," Sawyer said. "People shouldn't have to suffer over policy."

[Times Herald-Record]

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