The province is honouring paramedics with the Ontario Award for Paramedic Bravery.
This award is given to paramedics who performed individual acts of outstanding bravery in the face of danger.
Premier Doug Ford and Health Minister Christine Elliott presented the awards to 13 individuals in a virtual ceremony on May 27, honouring 11 recipients from nominations submitted in 2019 and two recipients from 2020.
“I am honoured to recognize the 13 recipients who have shown exceptional courage in dangerous and often life-threatening circumstances,” Health Minister Christine Elliott said. “Every day and especially throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, paramedics have consistently stepped up to protect the health and wellbeing of Ontarians in their time of need. I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to all of Ontario’s paramedics for their incredible work and for being there when your communities need you the most.”
Paramedic Julie Grainger, a resident of York Region, received the Ontario Award for Paramedic Bravery.
On December 2, 2018, Grainger responded to a call involving an injured man at the bottom of a 150-feet-deep wastewater access shaft. In partnership with Markham Fire, it was determined that the man has been injured after a caged shaft elevator fell and another worker landed on him.
Grainger used ropes to descend into the dark and cold shaft to deliver medical treatment to the patient. Further support from Richmond Hill Fire was required given the risks involved. Grainger placed her life at risk and provided medical care to the patient for over two hours throughout the rescue.
“Honouring our local frontline heroes is one of the great privileges I have as MPP,” said Paul Calandra, Member of Provincial Parliament for Markham-Stouffville. “Paramedic Grainger demonstrated extraordinary bravery in the line of duty, putting her life at risk for others. On behalf of the people of Markham-Stouffville, I am honoured to recognize her selfless commitment to duty as she is awarded with the Ontario Award for Paramedic Bravery.”
“On behalf of York Regional Council and The Regional Municipality of York, I am honoured to recognize York Region Paramedic Julie Grainger for her dedication to the health, safety and well- being of our 1.2 million residents and for her extraordinary act of bravery in the line of duty,” York Region Chairman and CEO Wayne Emmerson said.
“This award demonstrates the outstanding dedication of our team of hard-working paramedics and Ms. Grainger’s actions exemplify the characteristics we uphold in building strong, caring and safe communities.”
Paramedics have played a critical role in Ontario’s fight against COVID-19, from conducting swabbing and testing, protecting health system and hospital capacity by supporting patient transfers, and they continue to support Ontario’s vaccine rollout, including administering vaccines to individuals who have limited mobility and cannot travel to a mass immunization clinic.
“Paramedics are on the frontlines when it comes to protecting our communities and saving lives. Throughout the pandemic, we have seen paramedics performing incredible acts of service and generosity,” Premier Doug Ford said. “From assisting with the vaccine rollout to alleviating hospital capacity by helping with home care, they have been here to support us every step of the way. On behalf of everyone in Ontario, I want to thank each of them for their service and congratulate this year’s winners of the Paramedic Bravery Awards. You are true heroes.”