Aug 28, 2014

NAGE testifies against CA SB556 in Senate Hearing

NAGE on behalf of NAGE EMS and IAEP locals testified against SB556 at an August 28 hearing before California’s Senate Judiciary Committee.  The bill would require EMTs and paramedics working for private ambulance companies to wear labels designating them as government contractors if their employers were contracted for government work (such as responding to 9-1-1 calls).

NAGE National Representative Dary Sardad told the committee that the confusion created by the labeling requirements posed a public safety risk.  Sardad told the committee that the bill was “a solution in search of a problem”, “completely unnecessary”, and did nothing to “improve any EMS or 911 system in California”.

The battle over labeling private EMS providers has been going on for several years as part of the public/private competition for EMS services in California.  Two years ago, NAGE fought against AB2389, the first attempt at an anti-private-EMS-labeling bill until the governor vetoed it.  NAGE successfully fought against SB556 again in 2013; lawmakers placed the bill in the inactive file.  Just three weeks ago, State Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) re-activated the bill, which has been fast-tracked through the legislative process with new amendments.

NAGE on behalf of NAGE EMS and IAEP locals continues to oppose this labeling scheme on behalf of California EMS workers employed by private companies. The confusion created through this legislation, if enacted, could endanger public health and safety.  NAGE EMS and IAEP members can go to the Member Action Center of their respective division websites to find more information and ways to get involved. 

For NAGE EMS:  www.nage-ems.org
For IAEP:  www.iaep.org 



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