Jul 24, 2018

Paramedic Joins Lip Sync Battle for a Great Cause

A paramedic based in Sumter County, Florida, is using the national first responders lip sync battle to raise awareness and funds for a worthy cause.

Paramedic Stewart Eubanks, Local President of International Association of EMTs and Paramedics (IAEP) Local R5-092, and his fellow EMS union members are using Eubanks’ viral lip-syncing video to bring awareness to first responder suicide and promote an online fundraising campaign.

In recent months, law enforcement, firefighters, and EMS agencies across the nation have been creating lip sync videos to share online and the trend quickly gained national attention.

"It's great to see first responders let off a little steam and have some fun. It's an important part of the job that is so frequently overlooked," said Eubanks.  

On Tuesday, July 20, Eubanks posted his own lip sync video to Facebook. His performance of Coolio’s “Gangsta Paradise” took 10 minutes to record on a rare break between 911 calls and has been viewed in countries worldwide over 753,000 times.

What began as sharing a laugh with fellow EMS professionals became a platform to promote IAEP Local R5-092’s fundraising campaign to prevent first responder suicide. The crew is selling t-shirts to raise donations for the Code Green Campaign, an organization which works to reduce the high rates of mental health issues in first responders.

 “The stresses EMS professionals are exposed to cause increased rates of PTSD, substance abuse, and suicide. The IAEP strives to improve working conditions for EMS because these men and women dedicate their lives to keeping us safe,” said IAEP National Director Philip Petit.
The viewers online responded with overwhelming positivity. The comments range from Florida residents stating, “I need you to come if I call 911!” to EMS professionals from Germany giving their best wishes. After seeing the video, community leaders looking to improve mental health resources for first responders reached out to Eubanks about working together in the future.

“The opportunity for community outreach is unreal,” said Eubanks, who recognizes the importance of bringing unity to the typically high stress EMS community and their patients through platforms like social media.

Click here to help prevent first responder suicide by spreading awareness or buying a t-shirt.


 

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