Paramedical Staff: Sexual Offences

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered at on 23 May 2024.

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Photo of Charlotte Nichols Charlotte Nichols Labour, Warrington North

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to help end sexual abuse of female paramedics in the workplace.

Photo of Andrew Stephenson Andrew Stephenson Assistant Whip, Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

The National Health Service takes reports of sexual abuse of its staff extremely seriously. NHS England welcomed the recommendations of the recent independent review of the ambulance sector culture, Culture Review of Ambulance Trusts, which highlights the need to target bullying and harassment, including sexual harassment, and enable freedom to speak up. The report is available at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/Culture-review-of-ambulance-trusts.pdf

These recommendations are now being implemented, alongside actions related to the report by the Office of the Chief Allied Health Professions at NHS England and the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives (AACE), entitled Reducing Misogyny and Improving Sexual Safety in the Ambulance Service, which is available at the following link:

https://aace.org.uk/reducing-misogyny-and-improving-sexual-safety-in-the-ambulance-service/

To emphasise the zero-tolerance approach to sexual misconduct in the NHS, last September, NHS England launched the first ever Sexual Safety Charter in collaboration with healthcare systems, to provide staff with clear reporting mechanisms, training, and support. The charter currently has 329 signatories from across the health system, including ambulance trusts. Signatories commit to a zero-tolerance approach to any form of sexual misconduct in the workplace by implementing the charter’s ten actions and principles by July 2024.

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