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Western Trust Chief Executive praises efforts of team in light of disruption by protestors in Foyle

Chief Executive of the Western Health & Social Care Trust, Neil Guckian.

The Chief Executive of the Western Health & Social Care Trust, Neil Guckian, has praised the efforts of the Trust’s Vaccination Team in light of the disruption caused by protestors at the Foyle Arena on Saturday, August 14.

In a statement Mr Guckian said:

“The Western Trust was running a special Pop-Up Vaccination Clinic for pregnant women at the Foyle Arena when a number of individuals entered the vaccination centre via an exit door and acted in an inappropriate and intimidating manner towards staff, volunteers and those women attending the clinic.

“They were safely ejected from the premises, however I want to extend my sincere thanks to all of our staff and volunteers at the Foyle Arena who were present on Saturday for the way they dealt with this difficult and challenging incident.

“As a Trust we will not tolerate abusive or inappropriate behaviour towards our staff and volunteers delivering health and care services, and we will would encourage anyone with any information to support the ongoing PSNI investigation into the incident, by contacting them on the non-emergency number 101, quoting reference number 1021 of 14/8/21.​

“To members of the General Public, including Pregnant Women, we would repeat the public health message that everyone eligible should take up the offer of a vaccination and not to be put off by the actions of others.

“It’s important to stop the spread of COVID-19 and therefore we advise everyone in our society, including pregnant women and those who have delivered within the last 6 weeks to come and get vaccinated.”

Police are appealed for witnesses following the incident.

Constable Laura Brown said:

“We received a report at around 2.15pm that three to four protestors had come into the Foyle Arena via the exit doors, carrying leaflets and a megaphone. They were said to have shouted abuse at a number of pregnant women attending the clinic, who were clearly upset by what happened.

“The protestors had left the Arena by the time police arrived at the location - and although officers carried out patrols in the area, they were unable to locate them.

“We are keen to identify the individuals involved in this protest and would ask anyone who was at the Foyle Arena and saw what happened – or has any information about the incident - to get in touch with police on the non-emergency number 101, quoting reference number 1021 of 14/8/21.”

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