Gadsden - Etowah EMS workers walk out after no paychecks


Emergency rescue crews at the Gadsden-Etowah EMS walked out tonight. Most haven't had paychecks in weeks. The company which owns the service hasn't returned their calls and employees say they can't even pay their bills.15 employees walked out Friday night, mainly because their checkbooks are empty. They haven't been paid in a month and a half. Not only has the lack of money been devastating, but out of seven of their ambulances, only three are working - and there's no money to fix them.{}"Some of us have taken our own time and worked on these ambulances to keep them running," an EMT with Gadsden-Etowah EMS said.{}EMT's told us, it's been six weeks since they've seen a paycheck - creating a huge burden on their families.{}"Trying to explain to our families why they're not eating their favorite foods, why the TV got cut off, trying to explain to our patients why we're not going to see them again," the EMT said. "That's hard.""Horrible. My truck payment is late, water bill is late, cell phone bill is late, my checking account overall is negative," James Dillard, a former employee said. "They want to close my checking account."They say, Gadsden and Etowah EMS is owned by Roger Stanmore. He also owns Decatur EMS. Those employees walked out too. We tried contacting him, but no response. {}"I know people who have worked here for years and have never seen his face," Dillard said."There's credit that has been ruined, banks are closing accounts, there have been bounced checks and charges putting them way way in the negative," an EMT said. "It's hard to put food on the table if you're not getting paid."Employees say they're so far behind on paychecks, that they can't even afford the gas to drive their cars home and they've been sleeping there too."My checking account has been negative for 28 days now, over $500," Dillard said."We didn't want to leave," an EMT said. "We wanted to stay and serve the residents of Etowah county and the city of Gadsden."{}


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