‘Give it to those in need,’ says B.C. paramedic of COVID-19 discounts

As Canadians rally behind health-care workers across the nation, a B.C. paramedic is asking people to pass on those acts of kindness to people who need it most.

On a given shift, there’s no shortage of baked good, free coffee, or discounts for Kelly Budway and most health-care workers during the COVID-19 crisis.

“While it’s extremely thoughtful and generous and kind, and these people just want to give back, it’s not us that need this,” said the Vancouver paramedic.

Budway told Global News she can’t speak for all paramedics but she said she has income, and there’s no shortage of work for health-care workers.

She said there are other people who need food and discounts more than her, and now is the time to reach out to people in communities.

“Families that have been laid off and can’t feed their children, the kids that normally get meals from school, the homeless, and older generation who are forced to self-isolate to stay healthy, those are the people that really need it.”

She’s thankful for all the thoughtful gestures but said she would like to see people donate to shelters or food banks.

Budway says a simple ‘thank you’ is good enough for her.

The 7p.m. cheers though? Keep them coming.

“When you’re on shift, you forget what time it is, and all of a sudden you hear it and look around, people backing pots and pans, police and fire trucks parading through, that doesn’t cost a penny, it really goes a long way with us, we love it. Keep it coming.”