Guilford County EMS stance on self-defense methods

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GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. — Guilford County Emergency Services responders train for dangerous calls in their continued education session.

House Bill 327 is currently conducting a study in EMS safety and deciding which self-defense tactics should be available to emergency responders.

Those resources include a crisis intervention course, self-defense tactics, protective garments and vests, non-lethal deterrents such as electrical weapons, chemical irritants, mace, pepper spray and tear gas.

Chris Wilson, with Guilford County Emergency Services, said the county opposes the use of such offensive methods and choses to train their staff on how to defend themselves in order to be safe.

“Law enforcement a lot of times are going into these scenes, securing them, making sure everything’s safe before we get into there. So really that’s a law enforcement type role and we really believe it should stay there,” Wilson said.

All emergency services staff are completing an eight hours of situation awareness training. Along with testing, situational rooms are set up to mimic scenarios on a call as well as self-defense stances and moves to avoid a physical altercation with an irate patient. Responders are then asked to recognize red flags that could impact their safety.

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