The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

New Zero Tolerance campaign targets violence against hospital staff in Leeds

25 September 2015

Leeds Teaching Hospitals and West Yorkshire Police have launched a new campaign stressing that violence and aggression against hospital staff is never acceptable and will be met with a firm response.

A set of posters, Zero Tolerance - Say No to Violence - have been designed to underpin this message. They show police officers and the hospital security team working together at Leeds General Infirmary and St James’s University Hospital to arrest those responsible for such attacks.

The Trust has joined forces with West Yorkshire Police, Leeds City Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Unit and trade unions to develop the campaign. The new posters will be displayed in wards and departments around the Trust’s hospital sites, including the two Accident and Emergency units in the city.

Chief Inspector Nik Adams from West Yorkshire Police came along to the Bexley Wing at St James’s to co- launch the campaign with Simon Neville, the Trust’s Director of Strategy and Planning.

Simon Neville said: “Across our hospitals we are committed to providing a safe environment for all. Or staff work have every right to feel safe at work and anti-social, violent or aggressive behaviour, against them should never be tolerated or accepted as being ‘part of the job’.

“While we have a good record of working in partnership with the police over many years to deal with offenders, and always encourage staff to speak up, evidence from our Staff Survey suggests a significant number of such incidents still go unreported.

“We want more staff to come forward to tell us about attacks so that the small minority of people committing acts of violence and aggression against our staff get the message quickly that this behaviour is not tolerated and they will not get away with it.

“These posters reinforce that message that people who abuse hospital staff face a firm response, including arrest and prosecution.”

Chief Inspector Nik Adams added: “I was delighted to come along to support the launch of this important initiative and demonstrate the partnership between West Yorkshire Police and the hospitals. All staff, patients and visitors have the right to feel safe at all times and we are committed to dealing with violence and all other forms of antisocial behaviour on hospital sites.”

As part of the Safer Leeds initiative, Leeds Teaching Hospitals works with its other partners to promote tolerance and respect, keep people safe from harm and protect property and the rights of citizens.

The Trust was the first in the country to employ its own Police Community Support Officers, and there are now four who work on the two main hospital sites providing invaluable support to our Security Team.  In addition the Trust has a high-tech control centre linked to over 1300 CCTV cameras which provide added reassurance for areas where violence and other anti-social behaviour is known to occur.

Action to tackle those committing violence and aggression against hospital staff has included criminal prosecutions and the issue of behaviour orders to deal with persistent offenders.