Basic First Aid and Street Medics
A Street Medic?
Large protests are usually accompanied by large battalions of police, who in the worst cases, injure protesters who are involved in their democratic right to freedom of speech and assembly. Other factors that contribute to the danger of a protest include the huge number of people involved, and widespread panic resulting from the police tactics of violence, intimidation and repression. Street Medics are there to respond to the needs of the victims of these tragedies. In the face of a lack of adequate emergency services street medics do their best to provide a substitute for services such as emergency transport, first aid and support.
Medic and Activist Action Preparation
Use Your Head
(Note: the above section was written by the A16 Medical team.)
What To Wear
What To Bring
Packing Your First Aid Kit
We've organized this list into 2 rough sections- things we believe most people will want to have in a complete kit in the first section and extras in the second section. We like the extras, and various ones of us carry more or less from the second list depending on the specific action (i.e. is it raining or snowing, is it 100 degrees outside), how much room we have in our pack, and finally what we both have experience using and have access to. Things like epipen and several of the herbs in the second section will only be useful if you can not only get them but also use them responsibly.
Finally give some though to your pack- both the pack itself (most of us use shoulder bags as they afford quicker and easier access on the fly) and how it's packed. What do you want on the outside for easy access? what needs to be kept dry? What things do you often or always use together so should be kept together? We all change our packs and how they're packed around a lot before we find the combination that works for us.
The extras (remember no one carries all of this so pick and choose- they're not listed in the order of importance)
What Not To Do
Medication in Jail
If you are risking arrest and take medication for any health condition that might pose serious problems were your medication to be interrupted (such as: behavioral disorders, HIV, diabetes, hypertension), you should be aware that you may not have access to proper medication while you are in jail.
A letter from a doctor will help. Three copies of the letter are needed, one for the legal team, one for the medical team (these will be kept completely confidential) and one for you. It should include the following information: your name, diagnosis, that you must have access at all times to your medication, a list of all meds that you require, a statement that you must be allowed to keep meds on your person so that they can be properly administered, and that no substitutions are acceptable. Since your name will be on the document, you may want to hide it on your body as a sort of insurance policy - perhaps you won't need it and then could eat it and participate in jail solidarity tactics, but perhaps you'll be worn out already at the time of arrest and will want to cite out in order to take care of yourself.
Better to cite out than pass out. Your meds will need to be in their original prescription bottle in order for you to keep them, but you also could conceal an emergency supply on your person if you want.
Another option to greater ensure your ability to participate in solidarity is to have the document as described above but with a photo of yourself rather than your name. Your prescription bottle would then need to have your name cut out of the label, while leaving the rest of the label intact.
make sure that your affinity group and the legal team is aware of your
needs so they can help care and advocate for you.
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