Thread: SAFER is out.

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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.

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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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    Quote Originally Posted by FireMedic049 View Post
    On behalf of the career firefighting community, we concur that you are not part of our community.
    No no, you can keep him. We don't want him either!

    I really don't understand this rift between volunteer vs career. Must be more of a regional thing as it doesn't seem to be much of an issue where I am.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FuturePrimitive View Post
    No no, you can keep him. We don't want him either!

    I really don't understand this rift between volunteer vs career. Must be more of a regional thing as it doesn't seem to be much of an issue where I am.
    I bet it would torque his nuts to know that in our combination house, the Career Staff are not treated like "Paid Maids." The volunteers are expected to empty trash cans, mop floors, clean windows, dust bookshelves, vacuum the carpets and maintain the apparatus along side the career staff. In addition, when all of the above does not get done due to training or a busy run day, guess who does it all after the career staff leaves for the day?????
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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    I bet it would torque his nuts to know that in our combination house, the Career Staff are not treated like "Paid Maids." The volunteers are expected to empty trash cans, mop floors, clean windows, dust bookshelves, vacuum the carpets and maintain the apparatus along side the career staff. In addition, when all of the above does not get done due to training or a busy run day, guess who does it all after the career staff leaves for the day?????
    One has to have nuts in order to torque them!
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    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.

    So let me sum this up for you... It isn't that career firefighters, including Union career firefighters, can't be fired, it is that whoever wanted them fired was either too stupid, too lazy, or too incompetent to follow the proper procedure. Yep that's civil service's, or the Union's, fault. How about you place the blame where it belongs? Leadership failing to do their damn job.

    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.

    Nope, it is clearly that most managers are either too stupid, too lazy, or too incompetent to actually be in that position of management. ANYONE in management, in any career field, that says their employees can't be fired should themselves be fired for incompetence. IF you take the time to document what the employee is doing that you have decided deserves his firing anyone can be fired. But outright firing someone with no documentation is a loser in many cases.

    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.

    IF the chief supplies documentation and supporting evidence most firings will be upheld. The exceptions are usually in obvious retaliation cases where the employee is fired because in some way he ****ed off the chief over some issue.

    In my area there are some POC FD's that have Unionized using the teamsters. (Side editorial, nice job IAFF in missing the boat on that one, Teamster firefighters, BRILLIANT!) If a Volunteer firefighter feels he has been disciplined or fired wrongly there is recourse. Go to the local governing body and file an appeal. Or get a lawyer and pursue legal action. It isn't like that volly is sent to the gulag.


    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.

    Geezus, why is this so simple for me to see and such a sphincter pucker problem for you? Create 3 more volly captain positions. Problem solved. Hell they can create a Pub Ed position out of mid air why not 3 additional captains slots?

    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 only monster you need to worry about is when the feds finally catch up to your endentured servant operation you have going there. The overtime costs and fines will more than likely severely injure your community's financial status and cause heads to roll in the chain of command of the FD.
    Dude you are so seriously Bipolar as to be scary. You hate paid guys and civil service and yet you are it yourself. What is the word I am looking for? I wonder what it might be? Hmmmmm.....Oh Yeah! HYPOCRITE.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    One has to have nuts in order to torque them!
    Oh, Yeah!!!! (slaps forehead) Stupid me!!!!
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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.

    This is interesting to me...you volunteer in your own department off duty because it's the "right thing to do". You volunteer with another department in whose territory you don't reside. Yet you stated previously that if you were driving down the street and came upon a wrecked car on fire with a three year old child trapped inside you would make absolutely no effort to help because it's "not your problem".

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    Quote Originally Posted by paetsHFD6 View Post
    This is interesting to me...you volunteer in your own department off duty because it's the "right thing to do". You volunteer with another department in whose territory you don't reside. Yet you stated previously that if you were driving down the street and came upon a wrecked car on fire with a three year old child trapped inside you would make absolutely no effort to help because it's "not your problem".
    This is where he will vomit some pathetic story about a certain jurisdiction that has specifically told his department "Not to bother assisting us or taking action in our territory."

    This is his cover story for the coward in him.

    I for one find it very, very hard to believe that a certain AHJ would tell another AHJ "not to act in our territory." How huge would the lawsuit be if that ever got out if someone got hurt in that territory and the coward or one of his cowards did not help out????

    But then again.....If Coward was next door to my territory.....I might be inclined to ask him not to act for fear he would just eff up the situation even worse.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FuturePrimitive View Post
    No no, you can keep him. We don't want him either!

    I really don't understand this rift between volunteer vs career. Must be more of a regional thing as it doesn't seem to be much of an issue where I am.

    It really depends on individuals. All it takes is a few people or one department that has tension between the vollys and paid guys for it to proliferate through the area. Example, take 1 combo dept. where the volunteers and paid guys don't get along. All the paid guys talk to other paid guys in the area, so now they all are suspicious of the volunteers. Then all the vollys talk to all the other vollys in the area, so they are all suspicious of the paid guys now.

    Once it starts it just keeps going. The rookie vollys and paid guys are ingrained by their senior guys to distrust the other side and it perpetuates.

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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.
    I'm not so sure that would be the case. Maybe LA laws are different, but we had 3 police officers LODDs up here last year (tomorrow is the 1 year anniversary of the incident). One of them was technically "off-duty" on his way home and stopped to "back up" the other two officers on a domestic call in his neighborhood. Even though, not technically "on-duty", his death was treated as a LODD and I believe his family received all benefits due to them.

    Now, if he had done this outside that community, the result may have been different.

    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.
    You have paid employees volunteering back to the department even though federal labor law says they can't. If they get hurt while "volunteering", you're going to give them paid time off because they are paid civil service employees, yet LA worker's comp says volunteers aren't covered for this.

    So, in filing a claim, it would seem that your department would have to LIE and say that the injured FF was working and "on the clock" in order to receive a benefit he's not eligible for as a volunteer.

    Wow, you guys have an FLSA/Comp time bomb on your hands.

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    Dude you are so seriously Bipolar as to be scary. You hate paid guys and civil service and yet you are it yourself

    Because I beleive that volunteers and call pewrsonnel are a far more effictive way to staff many fire departments that curremtly are all career or mainly career I hate paid fireman? Because I beleive that it's not the job of government to create firefighting jobs just because he community has the resources to do so if the community has the demographics to support an all or primarily-volunteer department, I hate must career firefighters?
    Because I am critical of career firefighters that resist laying off career staff and replacing them with call or volunteer staff when the community can clearly no longer afford that current paid staff, and there are clearly very few other options, I must hate career firefighters.

    Because I beleive that career firefighters have the responsibility to the community that they live in to volunteer there (if they have a VFD) and I am openly critical of them if they don't, I must hate career firefighters.

    I have very little in common with most career firefighters. I have much more in common with volunteers as that is what I have been and what honestly, I still consider myself to be, and I choose to socialize with them. I know volunteers I don't like because of thier attitudes. I know career members i don't like because of thier attitude, especially those that a very pro-union, primarily because my feelings toward the union (or any union) is much different than mine. I have many career firefighters that are friends, though we disagree on several topics.

    And yes I hate civil service. And I wish there was someway to get out from under them, but the liberal appeals court have deemed that we must go civil service after the court up here said we did not.

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    I bet it would torque his nuts to know that in our combination house, the Career Staff are not treated like "Paid Maids." The volunteers are expected to empty trash cans, mop floors, clean windows, dust bookshelves, vacuum the carpets and maintain the apparatus along side the career staff. In addition, when all of the above does not get done due to training or a busy run day, guess who does it all after the career staff leaves for the day?????

    I'll repeat this for those who need to have it repeated.

    Both the career firefighter, the part-time firefighter and amy volunteers who rode out that night or are riding out that day are responsible for all the morning cleaning chores.

    If a truck gets dirty during the day, the volunteers riding out cleans the truck with the paid staff.

    All volunteers respopnding to an incident are responsible is assiting putting apparatus in service.

    However, the career firefighter is responsible for apparatus and tool maintainence that day, as well as coordianting, and as necessary based on experience, conducting and documenting the assigned rating-related test or duty for the day. He is also responsible for volunteer station and apparatus inspections and making sure all daily projects are done.

    I guess to me that makes him a mechanic and an administrator, not a maid. But I could be wrong.

  22. #72
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    [QUOTE=LaFireEducator;1164594]Dude you are so seriously Bipolar as to be scary. You hate paid guys and civil service and yet you are it yourself

    Because I beleive that volunteers and call pewrsonnel are a far more effictive way to staff many fire departments that curremtly are all career or mainly career I hate paid fireman? Because I beleive that it's not the job of government to create firefighting jobs just because he community has the resources to do so if the community has the demographics to support an all or primarily-volunteer department, I hate must career firefighters?
    Because I am critical of career firefighters that resist laying off career staff and replacing them with call or volunteer staff when the community can clearly no longer afford that current paid staff, and there are clearly very few other options, I must hate career firefighters.

    Face the facts that MOST career fire departments came about because of the inability to handle the call volume with volunteers, or that the number of volunteers was simply inadequate to handle emergencies. Are there career firefighters who believe it is proper to look for ways to add more career firefighters to the staff? Of course. Are there obstructionist volunteers who refuse to face up to the reality that in their particular circumstance career firefighters are needed to augment the number of volunteers? Of course. Each situation must be looked at individually. Take the city I work for as a career firefighter for example. The call volume, especially EMS is far too great to be handled by volunteers. But if you look at the small rural village I live in the call volume there is far too small to require paid firefighters.

    Obviously your community can support more career staff because you have said it yourself. So money is not the issue in your case. It is pure obstructionism on your part. You want to pretend you are still a volunteer while getting the benefits of being a paid member. Delusional is all that is. You can't have it both ways.

    I hate people who preach one thing while they live another. If you have time to volunteer to another FD in another community you had more than enough time to fulfill your Pub Ed job as a volunteer. Yet while you rant on and on about the skill level of your volunteers none of them was capable OR MORE IMPORTANTLY WILLING to assist with the pub ed duties. So much for filling every position with volunteers.


    Because I beleive that career firefighters have the responsibility to the community that they live in to volunteer there (if they have a VFD) and I am openly critical of them if they don't, I must hate career firefighters.

    I do volunteer where I live and so do many other firefighters on my career FD. Your point here is not at all related to your turning your paid guys into endentured slaves and coercing them to volunteer back, in violation of federal law, to the FD they get paid to work for.

    I have very little in common with most career firefighters. I have much more in common with volunteers as that is what I have been and what honestly, I still consider myself to be, and I choose to socialize with them. I know volunteers I don't like because of thier attitudes. I know career members i don't like because of thier attitude, especially those that a very pro-union, primarily because my feelings toward the union (or any union) is much different than mine. I have many career firefighters that are friends, though we disagree on several topics.

    You can delude yourself into pretending you are still some uber volunteer when the truth, no matter how distasteful it is to you, is that you are a PAID member of the Bossier Parish Fire Department. PAID FULL TIME, not volunteer getting a pay check, not some delusional wannabe, but a PAID FIREFIGHTER. Pretend all you want, the only one that believes your drivel is you.

    And yes I hate civil service. And I wish there was someway to get out from under them, but the liberal appeals court have deemed that we must go civil service after the court up here said we did not.

    Aw, too bad. A shame the court said you actually had to follow the LAW. Funny how that works.

    Seriously, you need to stop playing games and just face the facts. The law is the law. Slavery was abolished by the civil war. You, no matter how distasteful it is to you, are a paid firefighter.
    Crazy, but that's how it goes
    Millions of people living as foes
    Maybe it's not too late
    To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

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    You have paid employees volunteering back to the department even though federal labor law says they can't. If they get hurt while "volunteering", you're going to give them paid time off because they are paid civil service employees, yet LA worker's comp says volunteers aren't covered for this.

    So, in filing a claim, it would seem that your department would have to LIE and say that the injured FF was working and "on the clock" in order to receive a benefit he's not eligible for as a volunteer.


    I'll explain this again, because it is complicated.

    Under LA workman's comopensation, volunteer firefighters are only entitled to the payment of medical bills if hurt while training or at an incident. They are not eligable for income-related compensation.

    In the past, if a career member was hurt (and there has only been one case and the injury was minor) while volunteering his injury was filed with workman's comp as a volunteer as he was off-duty and functioning as a volunteer member. The member had to use his department sick time to cover his paycheck. If we had a situation where that ran out, he would have no longer received a paycheck.

    Now that we are civil service, one of the benefits under the law is unlimited sick time for any illness or injury on or off duty up to 364 days for career personnel. If the member can return to even light duty for day 365, he I beleive, can then get another 364. If he cannot, he must be discharged. The only exceptions for this are acts that are "reckless and dangerous" such as skydiving and the like. To the best of our knowledge, there has never been a case in our area where an injury has been disallowed.

    The medical bills are still covered by workman's comp so his status as on-duty or volunteer at the time of the injury is irrelvant. Volunteers working part-time shifts are treated as volunteers by workman's comp.

    No, we do not have to forge paperwork as the member in the past had to use his own sick time to cover his time away from work. That is no longer the case.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 04-03-2010 at 09:29 PM.

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    This back and forth is getting old, however i want to address just a couple of things.

    I hate people who preach one thing while they live another. If you have time to volunteer to another FD in another community you had more than enough time to fulfill your Pub Ed job as a volunteer


    I do very little responding with the other FD. I was asked to join so that I could assist the young firefighter handling training. I respond to maybe 3 or 4 runs a month, primarily as a safety officer, and to observe the operation to note training needs.

    I was able to accomplish most of my pub ed goals volunteering as I worked a shift schedule at the Ambo Service, but it meant very little time at home. The department decided they wanted to accomplish even more and relaized that the program was at it's limit with volunteer staff.

    The department also identified the need for someone to take much of the training load, as well as 3 or 4 administrative responsibilities off the Deputy Chief.

    The department also identified myself as the one for that roles as well, and realized that I could simply not assume those additional roles and tasks as a volunteer or even as a part-time member.

    The department decided that additional admin staff was needed. they made a choice. I'll let them know you disagree.

    Obviously your community can support more career staff because you have said it yourself. So money is not the issue in your case. It is pure obstructionism on your part

    Yes, we have the money. In fact, we probably have the funding to hire 1 or 2 more beyond the 3 we plan on hiring.

    The thing that irratates me the the attiude of your post which basically says, that hiring paid staff is progress and not hiring paid staff if the money is available and keeping a primarily department is somehow not marching forward, or even regression.

    That statement assumes that hiring additional personnel will improve the delivery of services. And that is the only way gto improve the delivery of services. The fact is adding staff is not improvement if that money can be directed at recruiting and retention of a much larger pool of volunteer members, which is the case here.

    The fact is we plan on spending about 160K a year for saleries and benefits. For that money, we will be adding 1 paid member around the clock. 1 member at a time.

    Think of how many volunteers we could recruit and retain with that 160K.

    There is no doubt in my mind that if that 160K was directed towards the volunteer base rather than 1 paid member at a time, we could easily increase the number of volunteers responding, given our demographics, by 4-6 per call, at a minimum.

    Instead, we are spending it one 1 paid member per shift. To me, hiring 3 additional personnel is simply wasteful and extremly cost ineffective.

    That being said, would I oppose 1 member being hired for a daytime only shift to help with mainataince and testing projects? No, because there is a demonstrated need in that area, as long as ther remaining 120K was directed towards recruiting and retention. That would also releive some of volunteer responsibility with hose, pump and hydrant testing.

    I could even be convinced that hiring 2 daytime firefighters might be a wise choice, espeically given that fact that we now provide coverage to the National Guard facilty and have recently absorbed a neighboring dysfunctional fire district, however that would seriously hamper a serious recruitment and rentention program and may cause more harm than good in the long run.

    Sorry bro but you have been drinking way too much union kool-aid if you beleive that hiring paid staff in our situation is the answer, because it is not. And it's not an effective in many other places where the demographics can still support significant or all-volunteer involvement. We are a community that falls into that catagory.

    If that makes me an obstructionist, so be it. I want to see the department get the most bang for it's buck, which isn't by hiring. And yes, I also want to keep the department as much a volunteer organization as possible, as that is the best and most cost-effective way to deliver services in our district, as well as the fact that it is keeping the tradition of volunteering alive.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 04-03-2010 at 09:38 PM.

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    If that makes me an obstructionist, so be it
    To quote Yul Brynner as the Pharoah in "The Ten Commandments"...
    So let it be written... so let it be done.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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