From the editor: Never forget the people who save lives and keep us safe

Heidi, a paramedic who has been sexually assaulted. Photo: Mustard TV

Heidi, a paramedic who has been sexually assaulted. Photo: Mustard TV - Credit: Archant

It's been a week in which two particularly poignant stories have highlighted the risks some people are prepared to put themselves under in order to help others.

Our front page on Thursday told of a court case in which PC Jo McCormack was left facing 24 stitches to her arm after being

attacked by a bullmastiff-type dog while on a routine call in the city.

Meanwhile, Friday we covered the story of local paramedic Heidi, who bravely waived her right to anonymity to speak of the many attacks she and her fellow ambulance staff face, both physical and verbal.

The 29-year-old paramedic has been spat at, punched and sexually assaulted already during her short time on the front line.

Reading stories like this you can only have the utmost respect for the people who are prepared to do these jobs.

Not only are they at risk of being personally harmed, they have to get their heads around the fact that any mistakes they make come with potentially serious consequences.

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The majority of us are thankfully not in roles where one error could be the difference between life or death.

Throw in the fact that those on the frontline of our emergency services, be they police, fire, ambulance or NHS workers, probably face long hours and are unlikely to be spectacularly paid and it's a wonder people want to apply for these jobs.

But thankfully they do, because without them life would be so much worse.

The media industry is not shy of taking a critical eye of the organisations these people work for. That is especially the case in this era of reduced budgets and mass cutbacks.

However, people must try not to take our efforts to fight for better services, as criticism of those many people trying to do

their best in what are very, very tough situations.

Every single day we hear of stories where those men and woman have saved lives and made a difference.

And for that we must be forever grateful.

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