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Thread: SAFER is out.

  1. #41
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    Well, I guess I, as well as the other paid staff, simply have a different attitude on this.

    I guess we just have different view of the world which says that even off duty, you are still living in the community and have an obligation to respond when your community needs you. Yes, I am a professional, but to me that does not mean I alwways have to be paid for my services.

    I belong to a neighboring VFD and respond with them. Because I am a paid firefighter elsewhere, does that mean I am a "professional" and should not respond with them because I should be paid for my qualifications. How about the professional firefighters at other departments that volunteer with us?

    Does that mean the builder shouldn't donate his labor to building free homes or Little league dugouts because he is a professional? How about doctors or nurses at free clinics?

    Sure we could push the issue but nobody ever has. And if we did, we would all get a little fatter paycheck. But the cost would be less money on the table for PPE, training, equipment and travel. In fact, we as a department start out about 5K lower than just about any other area fire department or fire district, but nobody has ever pushed the issue for an increase in the base because we know it will hurt other areas of the operation. The admin sees that and is starting to address that with an increased incentive package, but we never have a shortage of folks, even from other higher paid neighboring fire districts, applying when there is an opening. The money is just not an issue with our members.

    Someone asked Why respond off-duty? Because it's the right thing to do, and reduces the need for hiring additional personnel, which is always a good thing. Responding off-duty has always been the norm and anyone hired understands that. And nobody has an issue with it. Some respond more and one or two respond less, but it's something we all do.

    Please tell exactly who we are hurting and who is profiting from our response, besides the citizens of course. You remember them ..... They are the ones that everyone likes to say we have sworn to protect.


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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Well, I guess I, as well as the other paid staff, simply have a different attitude on this.

    I guess we just have different view of the world which says that even off duty, you are still living in the community and have an obligation to respond when your community needs you. Yes, I am a professional, but to me that does not mean I alwways have to be paid for my services.

    I belong to a neighboring VFD and respond with them. Because I am a paid firefighter elsewhere, does that mean I am a "professional" and should not respond with them because I should be paid for my qualifications. How about the professional firefighters at other departments that volunteer with us?

    Does that mean the builder shouldn't donate his labor to building free homes or Little league dugouts because he is a professional? How about doctors or nurses at free clinics?

    Sure we could push the issue but nobody ever has. And if we did, we would all get a little fatter paycheck. But the cost would be less money on the table for PPE, training, equipment and travel. In fact, we as a department start out about 5K lower than just about any other area fire department or fire district, but nobody has ever pushed the issue for an increase in the base because we know it will hurt other areas of the operation. The admin sees that and is starting to address that with an increased incentive package, but we never have a shortage of folks, even from other higher paid neighboring fire districts, applying when there is an opening. The money is just not an issue with our members.

    Someone asked Why respond off-duty? Because it's the right thing to do, and reduces the need for hiring additional personnel, which is always a good thing. Responding off-duty has always been the norm and anyone hired understands that. And nobody has an issue with it. Some respond more and one or two respond less, but it's something we all do.

    Please tell exactly who we are hurting and who is profiting from our response, besides the citizens of course. You remember them ..... They are the ones that everyone likes to say we have sworn to protect.

    Understand that volunteering for a different department is totally different. The problem arises when you volunteer where you get paid. That sets up too many scenarios for abuse.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FFbg View Post
    I wouldn't paint city hall for free on my days off. I wouldn't sheet rock some one's house for free on my days off, and I'm not a professional painter or sheet rocker. However, I am a professional FF. So why I ask would I be expected to perform my profession for free? Don't get me wrong I love my time at work, but I went through way too much to get my dream job to be expected/required/forced into doing it without compensation.
    What are you going to do when you smell smoke/see flames in your neighbors house? In your house? Call 911 and sit on your butt? Or do something? How about if the house is down the block?

    Flood waters rising and threating your station. You going to go in to help move the apparatus out, save the TO gear, etc? Or keep sitting expecting someone else will take care of it. Wait for IAFF to negotiate and agreement for ________, get a written order, then file for double time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Well, I guess I, as well as the other paid staff, simply have a different attitude on this.

    I guess we just have different view of the world which says that even off duty, you are still living in the community and have an obligation to respond when your community needs you. Yes, I am a professional, but to me that does not mean I alwways have to be paid for my services.
    I think you are mixing issues here. There isn't a problem with wanting to help and I don't think anybody is criticizing you or your colleagues for wanting to do "more" for the community. The issue is simply that regardless of how you guys feel locally, it doesn't superceed the fact that federal labor law says that you CAN'T do that without being properly compensated while doing so.

    I belong to a neighboring VFD and respond with them. Because I am a paid firefighter elsewhere, does that mean I am a "professional" and should not respond with them because I should be paid for my qualifications. How about the professional firefighters at other departments that volunteer with us?
    No, because there is no federal labor law that prohibits volunteering time to an organization other than your employer.

    Does that mean the builder shouldn't donate his labor to building free homes or Little league dugouts because he is a professional? How about doctors or nurses at free clinics?
    These aren't the same things. As long as you aren't donating time to your employer, there aren't any problems.

    Please tell exactly who we are hurting and who is profiting from our response, besides the citizens of course. You remember them ..... They are the ones that everyone likes to say we have sworn to protect.
    You are hurting yourselves and your families, but if you're ok with that, then so be it. However, that isn't the true issue here. You're department is violating federal labor law and it really doesn't matter if you're ok with that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fireinfo10 View Post
    What are you going to do when you smell smoke/see flames in your neighbors house? In your house? Call 911 and sit on your butt? Or do something? How about if the house is down the block?
    This isn't the same thing. If the neighbor's house is on fire and I go over and knock on the door to alert them or provide some sort of assistance, then all I am doing is acting in a "civilian" capacity and helping my neighbor.

    Now, if the FD shows up and I throw on some TOG and start fighting the fire with them, then (legally) I have to be on the clock and paid for my time doing so.


    Flood waters rising and threating your station. You going to go in to help move the apparatus out, save the TO gear, etc? Or keep sitting expecting someone else will take care of it.
    Well, in my case, if we're in that situation, we will have already called in extra crews and the apparatus won't be in the station anyway, it'll be out running calls.

    You're also starting to confuse the issues some. There's a difference between moving some equipment around during a severe weather incident and routinely responding to calls while off-duty and not getting paid to do so.

    Wait for IAFF to negotiate and agreement for ________, get a written order, then file for double time.
    Great, another uninformed "hater".

  6. #46
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    You are hurting yourselves and your families, but if you're ok with that, then so be it

    Exactly how are we hurting ourselves and our families?

    By giving up 3 or 4 K a year in overtime that can instead be funnelled into training, PPE, equipment and volunteer incentives that makes our jobs safer? Seems like a reasonable trade-off to me.

    Again, the department feels this is not an issue. This is not a determination made by me. They are very well aware of the small city that had to pay 50K to each of it's full-time staff for a similar (not the same as there were a few key differences) policy a few years ago, and they still feel that this is not an issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Well, I guess I, as well as the other paid staff, simply have a different attitude on this.

    I guess we just have different view of the world which says that even off duty, you are still living in the community and have an obligation to respond when your community needs you. Yes, I am a professional, but to me that does not mean I alwways have to be paid for my services.

    I belong to a neighboring VFD and respond with them. Because I am a paid firefighter elsewhere, does that mean I am a "professional" and should not respond with them because I should be paid for my qualifications. How about the professional firefighters at other departments that volunteer with us?

    Does that mean the builder shouldn't donate his labor to building free homes or Little league dugouts because he is a professional? How about doctors or nurses at free clinics?

    Sure we could push the issue but nobody ever has. And if we did, we would all get a little fatter paycheck. But the cost would be less money on the table for PPE, training, equipment and travel. In fact, we as a department start out about 5K lower than just about any other area fire department or fire district, but nobody has ever pushed the issue for an increase in the base because we know it will hurt other areas of the operation. The admin sees that and is starting to address that with an increased incentive package, but we never have a shortage of folks, even from other higher paid neighboring fire districts, applying when there is an opening. The money is just not an issue with our members.

    Someone asked Why respond off-duty? Because it's the right thing to do, and reduces the need for hiring additional personnel, which is always a good thing. Responding off-duty has always been the norm and anyone hired understands that. And nobody has an issue with it. Some respond more and one or two respond less, but it's something we all do.

    Please tell exactly who we are hurting and who is profiting from our response, besides the citizens of course. You remember them ..... They are the ones that everyone likes to say we have sworn to protect.
    You do understand that once something is required of you it's no longer voluntary, but mandatory?

    I have never heard of a builder being required to build dugouts for the city baseball feild for free so he could keep his contractor's liscense. And there aren't any doctors that have to make rounds at free clinics to keep DHS off their backs.

    Volunteering is great, and I am a huge fan of it. However, being forced to work for free by a department that you are already paid to work for is not only wrong, but unethical.

    As for who is getting hurt by not having more paid personnel is simple. While on duty the baseline function of your working life is to roll out of bed, the dinner table, whatever it may be to come to someone's aid hands down no questions asked. A volunteer's pager may go off, and they can just ignore g-ma's cry for help and go on eating dinner with their family, mowing their yard, or sitting on their rump. But I'll bet money that when fire tones drop every volunteer in the county is driving 90 to get there. That's why it's called volunteering it's all voluntary.

    And don't you dare say I have forgotten who I work for. I care for every single person I come in contact with like they were my mom, dad, brother, sister, son, or daughter. And I only pray that you would treat my family the same way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    With all due respect, I should be able to volunteer for my own department off-duty if I wish.

    Fact is, that ruling took my right away to do that. It's wrong. Flat out wrong.

    According to my department, it's not an issue.
    Your department is in violation of federal law. Violation of federal law= CRIMINALS...especially in light of your flaunting the "don't give a damn" attitude.

    And as for your tired anti-career schtick; quit, or STFU.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    You are hurting yourselves and your families, but if you're ok with that, then so be it

    Exactly how are we hurting ourselves and our families?

    By giving up 3 or 4 K a year in overtime that can instead be funnelled into training, PPE, equipment and volunteer incentives that makes our jobs safer? Seems like a reasonable trade-off to me.
    So are you saying that you and your families couldn't benefit in any way from an additional "3 or 4 K a year" of income?

    I have no issue with your belief that trading OT pay for those other things is a "reasonable trade-off".

    Again, the department feels this is not an issue. This is not a determination made by me. They are very well aware of the small city that had to pay 50K to each of it's full-time staff for a similar (not the same as there were a few key differences) policy a few years ago, and they still feel that this is not an issue.
    Once again, it really doesn't matter how your department feels about this. The law is pretty clear that what your department does is illegal. If you guys choose to roll the dice on the issue, that's your choice.

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    Once again, it really doesn't matter how your department feels about this. The law is pretty clear that what your department does is illegal. If you guys choose to roll the dice on the issue, that's your choice.

    If they tell us to stop responding as volunteers tomorrow, that's fine. That would be the call of the command staff. Not me. And they have determined it's not an issue.

    If they started paying us, I would simply donate the overtime, less what I would have to pay in additional taxes, back to the department. Getting paid for responding off-duty is simply not right. It's part of the job here.

    So are you saying that you and your families couldn't benefit in any way from an additional "3 or 4 K a year" of income?


    Could I use it? Sure, but again, getting paid for responding of duty is not right. It creates two classes - one for the off-duty career guys receiving overtime and one for the volunteers receiving nothing except the points checks. Simply not right in our operation and will do nothing but divide the career staff and volunteers even more than being forced to adopt civil service for the career.

    You do understand that once something is required of you it's no longer voluntary, but mandatory?


    IMO there is a big difference between "required" and "expected". If you choose not to respond, fine, but don't expect a whole lot of help around the station from either the vollies or the other paid staff. There is no disciplinary action. It's a cultural expectation, not a "you shall respond off-duty" requirement.

    How many of you guys would isolate a firefighter at your station that chooses not to join the union? That it many places is not a requirement, but it certainly a cultural expectation, that will result in some consequences around the house if you decide not to join.

    I even say one post a while back that if a new member had an issue with horseplay, he'd be isolated. Damn petty if you ask me.

    As for who is getting hurt by not having more paid personnel is simple. While on duty the baseline function of your working life is to roll out of bed, the dinner table, whatever it may be to come to someone's aid hands down no questions asked. A volunteer's pager may go off, and they can just ignore g-ma's cry for help and go on eating dinner with their family, mowing their yard, or sitting on their rump. But I'll bet money that when fire tones drop every volunteer in the county is driving 90 to get there. That's why it's called volunteering it's all voluntary.


    So what you are implying, or outright stating is that the public is hurt by not having more career staffing because volunteers aren't dedicated enough to "roll out of bed" or "push themselves away from the dinner table"? As a 30 year volunteer that kind of thinking ****es me off to no end. I know thousands of volunteers that roll out of bed and leave the dinner table far more often than many career firefighters. Sorry to tell ya but having career staffing makes a department no better than a volunteer department. Your attitude sucks, and honestly, it's that attitude that often leads me wanting to have nothing to do with career firefighters, and why I consider myself simply "a volunteer with benefits" and not part of the career firefighting community.

    By the way, we average close to 20 volunteers per structure call, as well as an equally good response on other fires and MVAs. Our guys roll thier fat asses out of bed and push themselves away from the dinner table pretty often.

    There is really no point in debating this further. The department has no issue with it. And our career staff do not feel "forced" to respond, and they have no issue with it.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 04-02-2010 at 06:41 PM.

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireinfo10 View Post
    What are you going to do when you smell smoke/see flames in your neighbors house? In your house? Call 911 and sit on your butt? Or do something? How about if the house is down the block?
    I'm going to do my duty... and when the FD arrives, give the IC an update and let them go to work.

    Flood waters rising and threating your station. You going to go in to help move the apparatus out, save the TO gear, etc? Or keep sitting expecting someone else will take care of it. Wait for IAFF to negotiate and agreement for ________, get a written order, then file for double time.
    Additional personnel would be called in well ahead of time. OT rules and comepnsation have already been negotiated in our contract, and any OT expenses would be reimbursed with disaster relief funds... just like in your little corner of the world.

    Posted by LA
    By the way, we average close to 20 volunteers per structure call, as well as an equally good response on other fires and MVAs. Our guys roll thier fat asses out of bed and push themselves away from the dinner table pretty often.
    Nice way to insult your personnel...
    Last edited by CaptainGonzo; 04-02-2010 at 07:45 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Once again, it really doesn't matter how your department feels about this. The law is pretty clear that what your department does is illegal. If you guys choose to roll the dice on the issue, that's your choice.

    If they tell us to stop responding as volunteers tomorrow, that's fine. That would be the call of the command staff. Not me. And they have determined it's not an issue.
    You still don't seem to get that this isn't about you guys responding off-duty. It's about your department's willingness to violate federal labor laws and belief that it's "OK" because nobody internally has a problem with it.

    If they started paying us, I would simply donate the overtime, less what I would have to pay in additional taxes, back to the department. Getting paid for responding off-duty is simply not right. It's part of the job here.
    It's "not right" for a person to perform his job functions for his employer when not scheduled to be at work and get paid for it. Simply amazing.


    So are you saying that you and your families couldn't benefit in any way from an additional "3 or 4 K a year" of income?


    Could I use it? Sure, but again, getting paid for responding of duty is not right. It creates two classes - one for the off-duty career guys receiving overtime and one for the volunteers receiving nothing except the points checks. Simply not right in our operation and will do nothing but divide the career staff and volunteers even more than being forced to adopt civil service for the career.
    You already have multiple classes as a combination department. In fact, you kind of have a three class department - paid career on-duty, unpaid career off-duty and volunteer.

    Given how you've described your operations as being primarily volunteer based, if your career staff getting paid to perform their job whether on-duty or off-duty causes that big of a problem for the volunteer staff because they aren't getting paid also, then you really have a problem on your hands.

    How is civil service for the career side causing a divide between the career staff and volunteers?



    You do understand that once something is required of you it's no longer voluntary, but mandatory?


    IMO there is a big difference between "required" and "expected". If you choose not to respond, fine, but don't expect a whole lot of help around the station from either the vollies or the other paid staff. There is no disciplinary action. It's a cultural expectation, not a "you shall respond off-duty" requirement.
    I agree that there is a difference between the two, however regardless of how you label the situation, it's still illegal for your career guys to work without getting paid.

    How many of you guys would isolate a firefighter at your station that chooses not to join the union? That it many places is not a requirement, but it certainly a cultural expectation, that will result in some consequences around the house if you decide not to join.
    Maybe so, but going along with that cultural expectation doesn't violate federal labor law.


    As for who is getting hurt by not having more paid personnel is simple. While on duty the baseline function of your working life is to roll out of bed, the dinner table, whatever it may be to come to someone's aid hands down no questions asked. A volunteer's pager may go off, and they can just ignore g-ma's cry for help and go on eating dinner with their family, mowing their yard, or sitting on their rump. But I'll bet money that when fire tones drop every volunteer in the county is driving 90 to get there. That's why it's called volunteering it's all voluntary.


    So what you are implying, or outright stating is that the public is hurt by not having more career staffing because volunteers aren't dedicated enough to "roll out of bed" or "push themselves away from the dinner table"? As a 30 year volunteer that kind of thinking ****es me off to no end. I know thousands of volunteers that roll out of bed and leave the dinner table far more often than many career firefighters.
    Well, in some cases that may be true. It may not exactly be an issue of dedication, but there are places in which the public is "hurt" by not having more career staffing.

    Sorry to tell ya but having career staffing makes a department no better than a volunteer department.
    True to an extent.

    Your attitude sucks, and honestly, it's that attitude that often leads me wanting to have nothing to do with career firefighters, and why I consider myself simply "a volunteer with benefits" and not part of the career firefighting community.
    Well, yours isn't much better.

    On behalf of the career firefighting community, we concur that you are not part of our community.

  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Well, I guess I, as well as the other paid staff, simply have a different attitude on this.

    I suppose they would have a different attitude with the subtle threat that you have laid out here.

    I guess we just have different view of the world which says that even off duty, you are still living in the community and have an obligation to respond when your community needs you. Yes, I am a professional, but to me that does not mean I alwways have to be paid for my services.

    Federal law says you do have to be paid. Or doesn't federal law apply in Bossier Parish Louisiana?

    I belong to a neighboring VFD and respond with them. Because I am a paid firefighter elsewhere, does that mean I am a "professional" and should not respond with them because I should be paid for my qualifications. How about the professional firefighters at other departments that volunteer with us?

    Are you really going to sit there and be that frigging stupid? Really? No seriously, REALLY? TWO DIFFERENT FIRE DEPARTMENTS, the hours at one have no bearing on the hours at another. Just like anybody else that works 2 different jobs for 2 different employers. Go back and reread what you wrote here because even you can't be that completely, stupidly, clueless.

    Does that mean the builder shouldn't donate his labor to building free homes or Little league dugouts because he is a professional? How about doctors or nurses at free clinics?

    There is no federal law that says they can't because they are NOT a governmental employee. What you blindly refuse to see is that employers were FORCING employees to volunteer so laws had to be passed to prevent employers from coercing or extorting employees to volunteer.

    Sure we could push the issue but nobody ever has. And if we did, we would all get a little fatter paycheck. But the cost would be less money on the table for PPE, training, equipment and travel. In fact, we as a department start out about 5K lower than just about any other area fire department or fire district, but nobody has ever pushed the issue for an increase in the base because we know it will hurt other areas of the operation. The admin sees that and is starting to address that with an increased incentive package, but we never have a shortage of folks, even from other higher paid neighboring fire districts, applying when there is an opening. The money is just not an issue with our members.

    Why would you even need those 1 or 2 or 3 extra bodies when they are off duty? You say over and over how strong your volly staffing is, and how wonderfully trained they are. I refuse to believe that your run totals are so huge that the few times a year that they get called in would bankrupt your equipment and training budgets.

    Just about a month ago you were mouthing off about having enough monery to hire 2 or 3 more guys, like you chief wanted too, but you were opposed to. How is it that surplus is now gone when it comes to paying your current paid staffing. Once again you spin and fabricate according to the topic at hand.


    Someone asked Why respond off-duty? Because it's the right thing to do, and reduces the need for hiring additional personnel, which is always a good thing. Responding off-duty has always been the norm and anyone hired understands that. And nobody has an issue with it. Some respond more and one or two respond less, but it's something we all do.

    If it saves you from hiring more people then there is no reason not to pay them. Honestly you guys are cheap bastards violating the law and extorting your paid guys with subtle threats.

    Please tell exactly who we are hurting and who is profiting from our response, besides the citizens of course. You remember them ..... They are the ones that everyone likes to say we have sworn to protect.

    No one is profitting. Well, eventually the federal government will.

    Stop with the BS about you being so morally superior because you choose to break the law. I choose to get paid for the job I was hired to do. Golly just like a roofer, or plumber, or mechanic or any other wage earner.

    I do volunteer where I live. But that is a totally different fire department and it is not a violation of the law.
    Simply ridiculous is all I can say about your stance on this topic.
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireinfo10 View Post
    What are you going to do when you smell smoke/see flames in your neighbors house? In your house? Call 911 and sit on your butt? Or do something? How about if the house is down the block?

    Flood waters rising and threating your station. You going to go in to help move the apparatus out, save the TO gear, etc? Or keep sitting expecting someone else will take care of it. Wait for IAFF to negotiate and agreement for ________, get a written order, then file for double time.
    There is a huge difference between deciding on your own to risk your life, off duty, to attempt a rescue and being forced or coerced into volunteering back to where you work.

    With a duty crew in quarters they would be moving apparatus and other equipment to safety. Would others come in under those circumstances and help? More than likely. But also more than likely off duty personnel would be called in to work and be working already if flooding conditions were that bad.

    Frankly, both of your examples show a complete lack of understanding of how the career fire service works. There have been numerous stories right here on FH.com about career firefighters making rescues off duty. Did you read any of them? The very same guy who is advocating his FD's paid guys volunteering was adamantly opposed to off duty firefighters attempting recues in the scenario you presented.
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    Frankly, both of your examples show a complete lack of understanding of how the career fire service works. There have been numerous stories right here on FH.com about career firefighters making rescues off duty. Did you read any of them? The very same guy who is advocating his FD's paid guys volunteering was adamantly opposed to off duty firefighters attempting rescues in the scenario you presented.

    Difference is if our members were not acting as volunteers when responding off-duty, and attempted to make a rescue, and were injured, they would not be covered under workman's comp. Worse yet, if killed, their families would not be eligible for LODD benefits.

    Since they are responding as volunteers, they are eligable for both.

    Under civil service, which we have now been forced to work under, they are eligible for paid leave up to 364 days under both situations. In the past, they would not have been eligible for paid sick leave while operating as a volunteer though they are career personnel while operating as a volunteer, as LA workman's comp does not provide paid sick leave for volunteer members injured at an incident.

    Also as volunteers, they will have PPE and communications with them, as compared to off-duty career members making rescues without PPE and a radio.

    Totally different situations.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 04-03-2010 at 05:14 AM.

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    How is civil service for the career side causing a divide between the career staff and volunteers?

    Civil service is nothing more than a bull**** way of career firefighters who have screwed up and should be fired keeping their jobs.

    I know 2 career firefighters who should have been fired but kept thier jobs on procedural errors due to civil service. it's nothing but a load of c**p.

    As a former supervisor in another career field, it's nothing but worker's rights run amuck. And you know how I feel about worker's rights.

    That being said ...

    First problem is that civil service sets up 2 classes of firefighters in our department. You have the one class, the career staff, that now has a board that can override the Chief's decision regarding discipline and dismissal. And you have a second class, the volunteers, that have no board that can override the Chief's decision regarding discipline and dismissal. It's simply not right, but it's required by the law.

    Second issue is that civil service requires one captain per shift, which closes off 3 captains spots to the volunteer staff. That only leaves 5 captains spots open to the volunteers, instead of the 8 spots that were available per civil service. Again, not right.

    Those are the 2 immediate issues caused by the (forced) adoption of civil service. I see a couple of other monsters in the closet that may cause some issues further down the line as well.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 04-03-2010 at 05:28 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Difference is if our members were not acting as volunteers when responding off-duty, and attempted to make a rescue, and were injured, they would not be covered under workman's comp. Worse yet, if killed, their families would not be eligible for LODD benefits.

    [/b]Since they are responding as volunteers, they are eligable for both.[/b]
    You are wrong. Since your department and your "paid" fire fighters are violating federal labor laws, Worker's Compensation will refuse their claim. So in fact by knowing allowing them to perform duties, while "volunteering", you place them in the position you claim to be avoiding. As an employer you have to follow all laws whether you agree with them or not. You are not protecting them you are placing them and their families in avoidable danger.


    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Under civil service, which we have now been forced to work under, they are eligible for paid leave up to 364 days under both situations. In the past, they would not have been eligible for paid sick leave while operating as a volunteer though they are career personnel while operating as a volunteer, as LA workman's comp does not provide paid sick leave for volunteer members injured at an incident.

    Also as volunteers, they will have PPE and communications with them, as compared to off-duty career members making rescues without PPE and a radio.

    Totally different situations.
    Once again you are wrong. The are off duty and not covered by WC. Unless your Chief is going to lie to cover his men and state to WC that he actual authorized them to work, meaning they were on the clock. In that case he would be committing insurance fraud.

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    Fifty+ years ago... when my department was predominantly paid on call.. the paid firefighters were required to respond to off duty incidents without compensation. That was the main impetus for the paid members of the Department to seek union representation. In 1967, they became Local 1714 of the IAFF.

    LA.. I find it funny that you are against "workers rights"... since you are one of the workers and in theory could be s***canned at the whim of the Parish...
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Difference is if our members were not acting as volunteers when responding off-duty, and attempted to make a rescue, and were injured, they would not be covered under workman's comp. Worse yet, if killed, their families would not be eligible for LODD benefits.
    Wait a minute here, I am confused. You have repeatedly stated that you have no, I repeat NO, (as in zip, zero, nadda, nichts, nein,) workmans comp coverage when acting as volunteers- Don't you remember having a hissy fit when I told you that not only are you a bunch of cowards, you are a bunch of STUPID cowards for volunteering without any workmans comp coverage?

    So which is it? Do you have coverage or not?
    Last edited by FWDbuff; 04-03-2010 at 08:52 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Civil service is nothing more than a bull**** way of career firefighters who have screwed up and should be fired keeping their jobs.

    I know 2 career firefighters who should have been fired but kept thier jobs on procedural errors due to civil service. it's nothing but a load of c**p.
    I would love to know how the fire fighters screwed up. Once again it is easy to blast a system that was brought into being because employers abused their power to start with. If the chief and his officers are doing their job and documenting the violations the system works very well. It is when the administration gets lazy and simply want to impose it's will on the employees without sufficient cause that the administration has problems.


    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    As a former supervisor in another career field, it's nothing but worker's rights run amuck. And you know how I feel about worker's rights.
    You are the exact type of person that brought Civil Service rule and regulations into being. I have own 12 companies since 1978 ans still own two of them and have never had a problem, even when firing employees and having to go before the unemployment board. I keep my records straight and complete and have not had, to date, had an issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    That being said ...

    First problem is that civil service sets up 2 classes of firefighters in our department. You have the one class, the career staff, that now has a board that can override the Chief's decision regarding discipline and dismissal. And you have a second class, the volunteers, that have no board that can override the Chief's decision regarding discipline and dismissal. It's simply not right, but it's required by the law.
    The board can only override with cause and there are remedies through Civil Service if the board is wrong. Most chiefs complain because they feel they should have the last word, regardless whether or not it is fair to the employee or not. Generally it is administrative laziness.

    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Second issue is that civil service requires one captain per shift, which closes off 3 captains spots to the volunteer staff. That only leaves 5 captains spots open to the volunteers, instead of the 8 spots that were available per civil service. Again, not right.
    Something is not right with this statement. Civil Service sets minimums but I have not found where is sets a maximum number of supervisors a department must have. The minimum number of Captains was set to prevent employers from requiring FEO and privates from having to perform supervisor duties without being paid for them. That is also why we have a mandatory separation of pay in rank. Years ago you would be promoted and given $1. Once again a solution that had to be legislated because the employer was taking advantage of the employee.

    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Those are the 2 immediate issues caused by the (forced) adoption of civil service. I see a couple of other monsters in the closet that may cause some issues further down the line as well.
    The force was the employer forcing the government to step into an abusive situation and enact laws to protect the workers.

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