Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Paul wins national award

Firefighter Paul Pemberton has received national recognition for everything he’s been doing to improve links between Essex County Fire and Rescue Service and local deaf communities.

Paul was named the winner of the Outstanding Service Award at a gala award ceremony held by national deaf charity Signature in Manchester last Friday.

He won the award for the excellent work he has been doing to engage with the deaf community and make fire safety advice more accessible for deaf people. It includes creating an ongoing series of subtitled fire safety videos in British Sign Language (BSL) which explain various aspects of home fire safety.

Paul said: “It was an amazing evening and I was delighted to win the award. I didn’t for a second expect to win so it took me completely by surprise when they called my name out.

“Winning an award like this shows me that we are on the right track with the work that we’ve been doing and that is the most gratifying thing.

“As well as creating the videos we have been working with the British Deaf Association and the Royal Association for the Deaf. We hope to become the first fire service in the country to get a Deaf Aware Care Quality Mark.

“I was overjoyed to win. It was a real pleasure to meet so many dedicated people and hear so many inspirational stories. The impact this award has had in raising the profile of the Service and the work we have been doing with the deaf community here in Essex has been quite profound.

“This is just the start of the work we’ll be doing to bring important fire safety advice to all communities in Essex.”

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