DETROIT - Detroit EMS is ready to hire 40 new paramedics immediately all thanks to a new budget approved by the mayor's financial board.
The department also has 23 new ambulances on the way thanks to the civic group of Roger Penske, Dan Gilbert and others.
"This is by far one of the biggest steps the mayor has taken for our group, for EMS, in general," said paramedic Jeff Gaglio. "You can't run ambulances without personnel."
An EMS department that has been plagued with problems for years may now finally see a light at the end of the tunnel.
"You have a lot of units right now on a day-to-day basis that are closed strictly because they don't have the man power to fill them. They can't get overtime people to come in," said Gaglio.
Now some in Detroit are relieved the help they desperately need will be there if they call 911 for help.
"That's good. We need that because a lot of us out here be sick, and they don't come on time," said Rosalyn Collins, a Detroiter who suffers from seizures.
EMS officials said former medics who resigned will be first in line for the new positions.
"Hopefully before summer they can hit the road. They have to go through the testing process. They application process. They'll have to an academy as well," said Gaglio.
The city will be accepting applications in the next few weeks. The starting pay is expected to be around $13 to $14 an hour.
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