By AAP, 1:07pm January 27, 2016
Queensland's taxi lobby is calling for mandatory jail terms for people who assault professional drivers.
The Taxi Council of Queensland's plea comes after a spate of attacks on paramedics in the state's southeast.
"Whether it is a taxi driver, police officer, bus driver, paramedic, firefighter, railway employee or anyone who is carrying out their job of transporting or attending to the public, they deserve a level of protection from the law that is currently not there," chief executive Benjamin Wash said.
Mr Wash said mandatory sentencing would send a strong message to offenders and a warning to others that transport workers should be treated with respect.
"This is their workplace and they are faced with issues most of us will never be faced with in our workplace, so there needs to be special consideration given to their specific roles," he said.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said her government would be open to discussing the idea.
"I'm not aware of those concerns, but my (Transport) Minister Stirling Hinchliffe will be more than happy to sit down with the taxi council about those issues," she said.
There has been a recent spike in assaults on Queensland paramedics, including three incidents on Sunday alone.
One saw a 21-year-old woman allegedly bash a paramedic in the back of an ambulance after she had earlier passed out in the toilets of a Brisbane hotel.