Bob Crawford has been appointed as the new fire paramedic chief for the Municipality of Chatham-Kent. (Photo courtesy of the Municipality of Chatham-Kent).

Status Quo For Fire And EMS With Crawford

Chatham-Kent’s new fire and EMS chief says the municipality’s role in emergency medical services will be business as usual when he officially takes over in the new year.

Bob Crawford, who previously served as Chatham-Kent’s fire chief from 2001-2013, will now be responsible for overseeing EMS operations in the municipality as well.

He says Medavie is still in charge of the frontline paramedics while the municipality continues to be ultimately responsible for making sure emergency medical services are delivered properly.

“[Medavie] manages the staff — the paramedics are employees of Medavie, but what we do [at the municipality] is try to set up the environment so they can be successful when they come to work,” says Crawford. “We provide the stations, the vehicles, and the equipment they need to get the work done.”

Crawford says municipal staff will bring a more detailed report on emergency services to Chatham-Kent council in the coming months.

“Nothing has really changed, the situation is as it has been for years,” says Crawford. “But we’re going to bring a report back and underscore for council — and the public — exactly how that relationship [with Medavie] works.”

Chatham-Kent signed a five-year contract extension with Medavie in November 2016, marking the end to a “service review” that flared up passions from the EMS and paramedic community.

Municipal employees are compiling the latest report on emergency medical services in Chatham-Kent after a motion Councillor Michael Bondy made to review the day-to-day management of EMS within Chatham-Kent was unanimously approved at a recent council meeting.