Depending on the source, there have been greatly mixed reviews on this topic, even from within the Fire/EMS profession. While some feel that this is a great way for paramedics and EMTs to make their job safer, many also feel that the risks of bringing firearms into a profession where its providers are taught to "first, do no harm" is counterproductive and even dangerous.
This policy doesn't directly address vulnerable populations.
This policy addresses matters of public health by allowing first responders to carry concealed weapons on EMS/Fire to protect themselves in a location where law enforcement response times can be prohibitively lengthy, causing unacceptable delays in patient care or scene managment.
In recent years all over the country, there has been an increase in the targeting of EMS and fire professionals in violant crimes, a few of which this article goes into detail describing. More recently, buget cuts have reduced the number of available officers in the response area served by the Bethel Township Fire Department, preventing law enforcement to be able to respond to calls in a timely manner. This puts Fire/EMS providers at heightened risk.
This policy applies specifically to FFs and EMTs in the Bethel Township Fire Department who hold State of Ohio concealed carry pistol permits.
This policy aims to provide a measure of safety and comfort for Ohio EMS providers and firefighters who have to deal with the implications of major cutbacks in law enforcement funding.