An ambulance workers’ union has called for an urgent meeting between Scotland’s emergency services regarding mental health call outs, following comments made by Police Scotland’s Chief Constable Jo Farrell.

At a meeting of the Scottish Police Authority last month, Ms Farrell said her force “must reset the parameters of our role in responding to people living with poor mental health”.

“Each year, officers deploy to well over 100,000 mental health related incidents – the equivalent work of between 500 and 600 full time officers,” Ms Farrell said.

“In over 87 per cent of these incidents, no crime has taken place.

“Resetting those parameters will help ensure the most appropriate help is provided and allow officers to return to preventing crime and responding to threat, harm and risk as soon as possible after the moment of crisis has passed and public safety is assured.”

GMB Scotland, the biggest union in the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS), said crews were alarmed by the comments.

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