Ambulance drivers and emergency response workers contracted with American Medical Response (AMR) announced they intend to go out on strike on Tuesday, September 23, after rejecting management’s latest offer for a pay increase. AMR management is seeking to assure local government officials – with whom they contract – that services will not be affected. AMR spokesperson Jason Sorrick said AMR will transfer some of the 6,000 AMR employees located throughout California to Santa Barbara, adding that hotels, motels, and other temporary lodgings have already been secured for the replacement workers. Currently, AMR has 94 employees providing emergency response services throughout all of Santa Barbara County, except for UCSB, Vandenberg Village, and New Cuyama. Sorrick said AMR has offered its workers a 13 percent raise. Officials with the International Association of EMTs and Paramedics were not available for comment. Despite company assurances, some county officials believe that AMR’s temporary employees will be unfamiliar with Santa Barbara geography, and because of that, response time could suffer.


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