Staff from Coventry Council who helped revive a councillor when he collapsed and stopped breathing have been given an official vote of thanks.

Author: Ben CartwrightPublished 2 hours ago

Steve Dickinson, Paul Bowell, Callum Burns, Scott Davis, and Anthony Melia acted quickly and used their first aid training to help Councillor Joe Clifford in February.

The five received certificates with votes of thanks – backed by the council leader and leader of the opposition – from the Lord Mayor Kevin Maton and Councillor Clifford.

Meet-and-greet receptionist Steve didn’t hesitate to act when 80-year-old Cllr Clifford took ill after coming into the council house that day, witnesses told the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

“Joe came in I think to go to the office, he got to the chairs at reception and took a seat. Steve spoke to him, then he took a turn for the worse,” recalled Callum who was manning the facilities desk at the time.

“Steve took charge, I got on the phone to the ambulance. Others started clearing the area.”

While Steve did CPR, accommodation officer Anthony helped clear the area and radioed for first aid help, resulting in Paul and Scott arriving on the scene.

The due had finished their refresher first aid training just a few weeks earlier. In Scott’s words “it was quite surreal, it happened so coincidentally.”

Paul took over from Steve on chest compressions, with Scott on hand to help, and they were preparing to use a defibrillator.

But Cllr Clifford soon started breathing again and was awake by the time the ambulance arrived.

All the staff stressed the importance of getting first aid training if it is offered.

Councillor Clifford was taken to University Hospital Coventry - and doctors were able to diagnose and surgically fix a problem with one of his heart valves.

The 80-year-old believes the actions of the five members of staff saved his life.

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