Manitoba

Hospital guard says man who stabbed him with syringe said he's HIV positive: union

A 56-year-old man stabbed a security guard with a liquid-filled syringe at Health Sciences Centre this week, Winnipeg police say.

Man in crisis response centre became agitated before spraying then jabbing guard in head, MGEU says

A 56-year-old man stabbed a security guard with a liquid-filled syringe at Health Sciences Centre this week, Winnipeg police say. (CBC)

A Health Sciences Centre security guard is being treated after he was sprayed and then stabbed in the head with a syringe that may have been filled with blood, police say.

A 56-year-old man was in the waiting room of the Winnipeg hospital's crisis response centre when he became agitated Wednesday afternoon, said Const. Tammy Skrabek.

"[He] had begun acting out a little bit. He became very loud. Security had confronted him and spoke to him and attempted to de-escalate the situation when the male then attacked the security guard," Skrabek said.

The security guard was stabbed with a syringe filled with a liquid that possibly could have been blood or drugs, Skrabek said.

MGEU president Michelle Gawronsky says a pilot project is troubling because health-care staff who go through the training could be expected to intervene in violent situations. (CBC)
The security guard was first sprayed with the syringe and then stabbed in the temple, and the man "then proceeded to tell the officer that he was HIV positive," said Michelle Gawronsky.

Gawronsky said hospital security guards face violence on the job daily and conditions are getting worse.

"The rate of violent interceptions they [security guards] are doing are heavily on the rise, with drug addictions, with meth and other substances that are out there that are causing people to become violent and become mentally unstable," said Gawronsky, president of the Manitoba Government and General Employees' Union, which represents hospital security guards in Manitoba.

Skrabek said the 56-year-old was arrested and a syringe was found in his pocket. Police have not said whether the man was on drugs at the time of attack.

The security guard was released from hospital but continues to receive treatment, Gawronsky said.

No one else was injured and a critical incident stress management team is available to help any staff affected by the stabbing, a Winnipeg Regional Health Authority spokesperson said in a statement.

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Bryce Hoye

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Bryce Hoye is an award-winning journalist and science writer with a background in wildlife biology and interests in courts, climate, health and more. He recently finished up a stint as a producer for CBC's Quirks & Quarks. He is the Prairie rep for OutCBC. Story idea? Email bryce.hoye@cbc.ca.

With files from Meaghan Ketcheson

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