***JULY 21 UPDATE***
The company that employed the two paramedics said the following day that both paramedics have been fired.
FirstCare Ambulance sent the following response to WREG on Tuesday about the employees’ behavior.
“The behavior of these individuals is in direct conflict with our company values and their employment has been terminated.”
***JULY 20 ORIGINAL STORY***
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two paramedics are facing backlash after striking fast food workers claim they used an ambulance loudspeaker to tell them to “go get a job.”
Torrey Harris, who’s running to be a state representative, said it happened Monday morning as the FirstCare ambulance was passing the McDonald’s on Union Avenue near Cooper.
“We heard over a loudspeaker, PA system from the ambulance, ‘Go get a job!'” Harris said.
WREG was unable to locate video of the exchange, but Harris shot video of him confronting the paramedics minutes later after following them down the street.
In Harris’ video, they appear to deny being in the same vicinity as the strikers. But later, one of the paramedics apologized on Facebook.
“Torrey and I spoke on the phone just now, i wanted to apologize to him and to each one of you i offended by the foolish comment. I did not know what the event was about, therefore making that statement is inexcusable,” Mitchell Lott wrote.
Organizers said the strike was to push for $15 an hour wages, the right to form unions and for racial equality.
“Yelling out ‘Go get a job’ to people who actually have jobs and were just trying to fight for more money for hazard pay, for healthcare and benefits, I think ultimately that overshadows anything,” Harris said.
Harris confirmed he spoke to Lott directly and said he hoped what happened can be a teaching moment. He said he’s not calling for either of the paramedics to lose their jobs.
“I really want to see him say, ‘Okay, I see what I did wrong. Let me learn from it and see how I can grow from that,'” Harris said.
A representative for FirstCare Ambulance did not return WREG’s email.
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