1. #1

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    1

    Default Age limits and getting on a dept.

    Hello!

    I am new here and figured this is the best place to start for this question. After years of being lost in the world and not knowing what my calling was.......I fell into the firefihter/medic role at a late age. I am 39.....I am about to finish up all my classes and take state exam. I already am EMT-B and I will be attending medic school in Fall.

    My question is this....I live in Chicago where the age limit is 35. I have just gotten on a department but it is POC and volunter. Are budget is so small for this town that we just got a thing passed for ALS to pick up 3 medics and not until 2010. I want to get onto a dept here and want to know is there anyway around this age limit thing? I am 39 but as all of us we feel like we are 21 at times. I am in good shape and can pass any test.

    Also this another question that comes to mind......school I go a different route in the system.......can I do that? Or should I start looking at other states for this??

    I dont think age should be an issue. So any help anyone can give me please let me know..............thanks again in advance. Confussed

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default Hello

    All I know is that one of my friends was recently hired by a department in Arizona at the age of 39. So it can be done. Good luck!

  3. #3
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    9

    Default

    there was a recent article in chief magazine about this.

    a number of depts across the country had old age limits writen into job descriptions.

    A couple of guys sued on age discrimination basis and won the right to join the dept (they had passed all the test the "young" guys had) In doing so they removed the age limit wording from a number of the depts job descriptions/requirements.

  4. #4
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Marion, Mississippi
    Posts
    144

    Default

    I completed Paramedic school and graduated at 39.

    Sure, the young pups have "youthful energy" over you, but you have maturity and a work ethic they weren't raised with.

    Nowadays these guys don't see the need for "traditions" and "the old ways".
    They think wearing t-shirts instead of uniforms is no big deal.
    They think acting like the general public while on duty is acceptable.
    Many are just like school children and really put out a bad image.

    We need older guys to temper this generation and show them how to conduct our business.

    Don't let your age make you stammer.
    It's only a number.

    Professionalism and ability are more important.

  5. #5
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    710

    Default

    Like so many other employment variables, age is relative. We recently hired a 38YO, and he can work and run circles around most of the 19YO kids here. All our candidates complete a physical agility test as part of pre-employment screening.

    Honestly, there are times when I will recommend an inexperienced mature person who is physically fit over a candidate who might be 20 years younger with experience.

    Most fire departments find teaching firefighter skills a lot easier than developing psychological maturity.

    C6

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    liberty city , TX
    Posts
    24

    Default Not all young pups are bad

    Sure i think if you can do the job then it shouldn't matter how old you are (in reason). Yes Marion alot of the so called young pups are disrepectful to the old ways and tradations of the fire service, but not all i myself am a 3rd genaration firefighter so i do understand the old ways and was raised to respect my elders and wear my uniform with pride. As far as acting like the gen. public while on duty, i am appaled by the very thaught of any firefighter doing so regardless of age.

  7. #7
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Astoria, Oregon
    Posts
    10

    Default

    I have a hard time believing that departments now days still have age limit requirements. Our jobs should be based on qualifications, standards and competency. I always suggest that the fastest way through the door is EMS and Paramedic training. National standards or registry should be acceptable through the states and most departments will require you to attend their recruity academy regardless of your fire experience. Good Luck!!

  8. #8
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    7

    Default

    In IL the age limit has to do with the pension system. Some pension boards in IL have lifted the max age req but many still have it. The pension system rules come from state complied statute but since ur in the burbs check with the private contract services that some dept's use.

  9. #9
    55 Years & Still Rolling
    hwoods's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Glenn Dale Md, Heart of the P.G. County Fire Belt....
    Posts
    10,739

    Thumbs up And.............

    A Montana Court just found the Montana Age Limit to be Discriminatory. A few others already have, and more are coming, so Age limits should be gone in a few more years.
    Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
    In memory of
    Chief Earle W. Woods, 1912 - 1997
    Asst. Chief John R. Woods Sr. 1937 - 2006

    IACOJ Budget Analyst

    I Refuse to be a Spectator. If I come to the Game, I'm Playing.

    www.gdvfd18.com

  10. #10
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    50

    Default

    I can understand your pain, and frustration. I live in Cleveland and just found out they put a limit on their next test. For the longest time they never had an age cap on it but now they set it at 35 by time of the academy. I am 34... and no test scheduled until I am 35.

    I have 10 years of experience and only an Ohio FF1 and an EMT-B... because of the budgetary confienes of myself and the dept I work for I cant get my FF2, but I can function as one from the training I have recieved. I am running into IFSAC and PROBOARD stuff all the time applying for jobs... Best of luck, I am applying out of state and hoping something bites...

  11. #11
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Akron, Ohio
    Posts
    46

    Default

    Doug, Solon is giving a test. I'm not sure what their age limit is or what they require

  12. #12
    Forum Member
    CaptOldTimer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 1999
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    7,242

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hwoods View Post
    A Montana Court just found the Montana Age Limit to be Discriminatory. A few others already have, and more are coming, so Age limits should be gone in a few more years.


    See what happens when an older fellow gets hired? He is a chief.

    This old bird and I have been around the block several times and still can hold our own!

    As someone said some states has rules regarding pensions. That is if they hire a 35 year old, they will be ready to retire at 55 or 60 in some places. I think New Yark and New Jersey are like that as well as Illinois.

    Harve lets show these youngins a couple of things or two.

    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

  13. #13
    55 Years & Still Rolling
    hwoods's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Glenn Dale Md, Heart of the P.G. County Fire Belt....
    Posts
    10,739

    Thumbs up Yeah..................

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptOldTimer View Post
    See what happens when an older fellow gets hired? He is a chief.

    This old bird and I have been around the block several times and still can hold our own!

    As someone said some states has rules regarding pensions. That is if they hire a 35 year old, they will be ready to retire at 55 or 60 in some places. I think New Yark and New Jersey are like that as well as Illinois.

    Harve lets show these youngins a couple of things or two.


    And we certainly could............ Y'know, this whole thing amazes me. Retirement is thrown up as "THE" thing to be concerned about, but there could be changes in the Retirement System to allow for more Flexibility in workers ages. For instance, PGFD allows you to retire with 20 years service, which I did. BUT, you must retire at age 55. My idea would be to allow folks to retire at 20 years service, with no maximum age. You could get hired at 40 and retire at 60, theoretically. Another thing, is Retirement really that important?? Hear me out: I worked 20 years and retired with 50% of the last full year that I worked. I also paid into Social Security on every job that I ever had. I now collect on Both. Folks who try to get on a FD at 35, 40, 45 years old have already paid quite a few years into SS, so if they don't make the FD Retirement parameters, they still have something coming.


    Back to "The Youngins".......... Drill the other day, I got the "Looney Gun" out to play for a bit. The newbies looked at me with that "Oh MY God" expression when I said that we were going to flow a bit of water. (The Looney Gun is a 4 ft. long piece of 3inch high tensile Aluminum Pipe with a Gate and Nozzle on one end and a 45*elbow and a Siamese on the other.) After the 3 inc line was charged, I opened the gate and walked that sucker across the ramp, by myself, while flowing about 400 gpm..........
    Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
    In memory of
    Chief Earle W. Woods, 1912 - 1997
    Asst. Chief John R. Woods Sr. 1937 - 2006

    IACOJ Budget Analyst

    I Refuse to be a Spectator. If I come to the Game, I'm Playing.

    www.gdvfd18.com

  14. #14
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Rayville, Louisiana, USA
    Posts
    70

    Default

    Louisiana is 36 Sorry

  15. #15
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Mid-MO
    Posts
    11

    Default

    MarionMedic;

    First, it's absolutely ridiculous that you would say that about a younger generation just because they're YOUNGER.
    Second, most see the "need for tradition", it just unfortunately can not always be done "traditionally" if you want a progressive department.
    Third, uniforms makes absolutely no difference, department policy dictates that.
    Forth, the way they act frequently is based on what they've seen since they've been in emergency services from the older generation.
    Fifth, as for school children, I'm sure the only reason you say that is because the younger generation is regularly attending training and are eager to learn, just not always the "traditional" way.
    Last edited by rural457; 09-13-2009 at 12:33 PM.

  16. #16
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Bossier Parrish, Louisiana
    Posts
    10,593

    Default

    Dist ..

    Louisiana's state pension system's maximum age is 50.

    I was just hired at 49 by my department so I snuck in just under the bar.

    Most of the career departments have a maximum age of 35 or 36, but those are department policies, not the pension system's policy.

  17. #17
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    135

    Default

    Civil Service departments in Texas will not test anyone over the age of 35.

  18. #18
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Drake, Co
    Posts
    128

    Cool Age limits

    I know that some states do set limits, although as you guys are pointing out, more of these old cutoffs are being challenged everyday.. I am a 37yo female and actively looking for a career department to call my own in Colorado. My husband tried to tell me that it's a waste of time to apply to big city departments like Denver but I have heard of several guys in their forties who have been hired there. Loveland has also hired people in their 30's and 40's. Life experience and maturity is a plus for older candidates (you hope they have it anyway!). I'd like to think that I am judged for my attitude and ability to accomplish my goals then how old I am. If it's about being in shape, isn't that what the CPAT is for?

  19. #19
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    6

    Smile

    There are very few agencies that are career that have age limits, usually like your big citys like FDNY. To all the old farts out there they have to get over it and understand that the newer technology and advancements are great. That sometimes you dont need to do crap the old way but the new way. I dont care what my station did in the 70's, know im not dissing any traditions at all my comany is in full bdu's badges and all, but these young pups will be chief in a few yeras so all the old farts need to back off and let us so called "young pups" show what we have to offer i mean hey maybe we both could show each other a thing or two in the fire service.
    Josh Bean
    FF/EMT

  20. #20
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    70

    Default

    The age limit is not only bad for the older people, but it's kinda a bummer for the younger one's too. I am 18 and had my EMT-B and Firefighter II and Hazmat Ops before I even graduated from high school. No departments that are hiring in Illinois hire below 21, so now I am going for my medic, but I will have that when I turn 20 so I will still have to wait at least half a year.
    Sincerely,

    JuniorAFPD
    juniorafpd@gmail.com

  21. #21
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    299

    Default

    Well lets look at it from the towns perspective, if there were no age limits in a civil service place like NY state.

    Town needs five full time firefighters because five guys are retiring. They are required by law to have a civil service test and it has to be open to citizens, the questions are general knowledge / aptitude questions. NO FIRE SERVICE RELATED QUESTIONS can be asked. Stuff like map reading, math .. simple stuff.

    By NY State civil service law they MUST choose ONE from the top three candidates via score on the civil service test. Tests are graded in increments of 5 points ... 100 / 95 / 90 /85 /80 and so on. The top score guy gets 100 and second gets 95 and third highest gets an 90. Everybody else gets an 85 on the test. So they say we have a good list and can pick any of the three.

    They do and he is 55 years old. They have to pay for his fire academy so he is gone for 3 months or so .. they HAVE to pay him while he is there and pay for the school.

    Now they pick the next ....the 95 guy. Same thing 'cept he is 60 years old, off to school for three months while they pay him and pay for the school.

    Same thing for the 90 score guy. He is also old at age 65.

    The next two they hire are from the 85 score list. They can choose anybody in the score as long as they have three choices. Well there is 20 ppl to choose from and they take a couple of younger guys. Which of course they have to pay to send to fire school and wages too.

    For all the money the town is spending for the first three fire fighters they MAY only get a few years before they retire or no longer can / want to do the job. As you can see it can be expensive to hire and train people.

    Since in NY it cant really be held against you that you have not been to fire school they must hire one of the top three scores .. it can get expensive to keep hiring old guys all the time ... not hiring but FORCED to hire old guys all the time. Remember most of the legislators started out with local govt, pay taxes to local govt and have friends running local govt when they cry poverty about hring old guys ... they make an age restriction as part of it.

    The quick answer to this is ... NYS has an age restriction but they make up for it by not holding it against you if you dont have fire certs. They pay to send you to school.

    Here is a court case dealing with age limits in NYS:
    Second Circuit upholds a N.Y. statutory age limit of 35 for new police officers; the law does not violate the ADEA. In 1986 the Congress amended the ADEA to provide state and local governments an exception covering the employment of law enforcement officers and firefighters. Pub. L. 99-592, 100 Stat. 3342, codified at 29 U.S. Code 623(i). Feldman v. Nassau County, #05-0444, 434 F.3d 177, 2006 U.S. App. Lexis 453, 97 FEP Cases (BNA) 449 (2d Cir. 2006). {N/R}

    Many more listed at http://www.aele.org/law/Digests/empl3.html

    Now off to my opinion ..... i don't think its good for US old ppl but i can see why they do it. I also can state it might be good for the community, but i know it sucks. The other option and know for some it no option at all ... move to a not much of an age restriction state like where i am ... Florida.

    Unfortunately here 99% of the time you have to pay you OWN way thru fire school. Then look for a job.

  22. #22

    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    1

    Default Age limits in hiring - ILLINOIS

    Illinois pension law is one of the main reasons for the age limit in getting on a department. You mentioned that you are working POC... depending on how long, that may help you. You should look at the following link to see if you fall under one of the exceptions to the statutory maximum hiring age detailed in the Illinois Municipal Code 65 ILCS 2/10-2.1-6 or 70 ILCS 705/16.06. I've added two links, but I don't know if it will work here...

    http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs...07007050K16.06
    http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs...Municipal+Code.

    I have seen sme departments that do not have an age requirement, but they usually require you to be a paramedic at time of hire and FFII (which I think you have?)

    Good luck!

  23. #23
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Galva, Illinois
    Posts
    12

    Default Illinois laws

    In Illinois it is a law because of pensions. We have a state pension that you must retire at 65. If you are hired after 35 you can't do 30 years so they made it a law that you can't get an entry level job after 35 unless you were previous police or fire and could buy back pension time. Going through it now, butluckily I was a cop for 13 years so even at 37 I am eligible for an entry level job in fire.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Age Limits
    By Dave1983 in forum The Off Duty Forums
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 02-25-2005, 01:02 AM
  2. Age Limits
    By DIESEL1030 in forum Hiring & Employment Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-29-2003, 06:04 AM
  3. Age limits
    By Nozlnut133 in forum Emergency Vehicle Operations
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-31-2000, 01:46 AM
  4. Age limits
    By Nozlnut133 in forum Volunteer Forum
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-13-2000, 06:21 PM
  5. Age limits
    By Nozlnut133 in forum Emergency Vehicle Operations
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-15-1999, 10:46 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Log in

Click here to log in or register