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Thread: Volunteers MIA

  1. #21
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    I used to be one of those no-show ff's a couple months after I joined but after one or two one-on-one conversations with the chief I turned myself around to be one of the top responding members on the depatment. As a member of the personnel board I tend to give MIA members a little bit more time than most people because I know that a member will eventually catch the bug on their own if you let them.

    Most of the time these members are doing no harm by not responding so instead of potentially losing a great asset, give them time and space to figure out their role on the department, and you will gain or regain some excellent firefighters.


  2. #22
    55 Years & Still Rolling hwoods's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by voyager9 View Post
    I know the guys, and there is no way I'm letting any of them anywhere near my daughter unsupervised.

    About 14 years from now, remember that......

    All 4 of our Daughters married into the Fire Service, and 3 out of 4 are/were members themselves. Grandkids are now involved, with the oldest Grandson recently cleared to Drive all Apparatus. It appears to run in the Family, His 2 year old Daughter gets in the Drivers seat and doesn't want to get out....
    Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by voyager9 View Post
    As a father of a 2-month old I can definitely relate. I've already missed two workers because I was on baby duty. I wouldn't change it for the world, but it's hard to comfort a collicy baby while listening to the scanner .
    ..
    I have 4 kids 6-11yr. Trust me, you don't have either of the items of equipment a 2m old cares anything about. Forget the PC empathy BS it's not going to get you anything. Go to the call where you can accomplish something useful.

    Kid room is something we've talked about but not attempted. Directing a group of wives can be harder than hurding cats.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireinfo10 View Post
    I have 4 kids 6-11yr. Trust me, you don't have either of the items of equipment a 2m old cares anything about. Forget the PC empathy BS it's not going to get you anything. Go to the call where you can accomplish something useful.
    Lol. Thanks for the advice. I think I'll file that under "if I ever want to be a single parent".
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  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by hwoods View Post
    About 14 years from now, remember that......

    All 4 of our Daughters married into the Fire Service, and 3 out of 4 are/were members themselves. Grandkids are now involved, with the oldest Grandson recently cleared to Drive all Apparatus. It appears to run in the Family, His 2 year old Daughter gets in the Drivers seat and doesn't want to get out....
    There's something wrong when an entire crew has the same name on the back of their PPE.. Usually we find that sort of thing closer to the Pine Barrens.
    So you call this your free country
    Tell me why it costs so much to live
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  6. #26
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    To be honest,I don't know what the policy at my old department was.It could be a letter reminding them that they've missed enough training and/or calls that loss of membership is possible or if the Chief sent a few of "the boys" over to the MIA member's home to pay a visit in the middle of the night.
    I do know that the Chief at the time I was on would do everything but rent a bus and drive around picking people up to carry them to training.He had the philosophy of "If I feed them,they will come" which worked rather well.
    We also seemed to get calls during mutual training sessions which impressed our neighbors because before the aforementioned culinary gitdowns,the officers would break out who brought what PPE (required to be brought if you rode the rig to the other station where the training was) and who was going to do what on which type of calls.
    Yes,we had people who barely made the minimum training sessions,calls and the annual Christmas Dinner.They didn't want to miss a free meal with their points check being handed out.
    But,we also had the people who'd make as many calls as their work schedules or family situations would let them make and beyond.
    Babysitting depended on whose wife came along.Most folks made sure that the kids weren't along if they responded POV but I've seen a few shiny faces peeking out from the windows of "Daddy's truck" while on scene.I never agreed with the idea of bringing the kids to a call.What if we had to pull out and their Daddy was the one still inside?

  7. #27
    MembersZone Subscriber tree68's Avatar
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    Of course, if enough people aren't showing up, you can just shut the department down.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

    Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by doughesson View Post
    To be honest,I don't know what the policy at my old department was.It could be a letter reminding them that they've missed enough training and/or calls that loss of membership is possible or if the Chief sent a few of "the boys" over to the MIA member's home to pay a visit in the middle of the night.
    I do know that the Chief at the time I was on would do everything but rent a bus and drive around picking people up to carry them to training.He had the philosophy of "If I feed them,they will come" which worked rather well.
    We also seemed to get calls during mutual training sessions which impressed our neighbors because before the aforementioned culinary gitdowns,the officers would break out who brought what PPE (required to be brought if you rode the rig to the other station where the training was) and who was going to do what on which type of calls.
    Yes,we had people who barely made the minimum training sessions,calls and the annual Christmas Dinner.They didn't want to miss a free meal with their points check being handed out.
    But,we also had the people who'd make as many calls as their work schedules or family situations would let them make and beyond.
    Babysitting depended on whose wife came along.Most folks made sure that the kids weren't along if they responded POV but I've seen a few shiny faces peeking out from the windows of "Daddy's truck" while on scene.I never agreed with the idea of bringing the kids to a call.What if we had to pull out and their Daddy was the one still inside?
    I agree about the whole bringing the kids on the call with you in your POV. I have responded with the kids a couple times. But only with the wife with me, If its just me and the kids, looks like im going to have to sit this one out. Could never imagine if I had the kids with with me on a structure fire and I didnt make it out.

  9. #29
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    One way to get your chief on board (hopefully) is demonstrate the liability of having members who do not participate in training. God help your department if something tragic happens, NIOSH comes in, and sees Firefighter NoShow had 20 hours of training for the year. The fines and penalties can bankrupt a department.

    Tax payers expect more from us these days. As an organization, you need to establish firm rules as to what is expected of members. The Rotary club mandates certain levels of particpation in activies; why don't we?

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyrnResQ View Post
    One way to get your chief on board (hopefully) is demonstrate the liability of having members who do not participate in training. God help your department if something tragic happens, NIOSH comes in, and sees Firefighter NoShow had 20 hours of training for the year. The fines and penalties can bankrupt a department.

    Tax payers expect more from us these days. As an organization, you need to establish firm rules as to what is expected of members. The Rotary club mandates certain levels of particpation in activies; why don't we?
    You do realize in the volunteer world - some places only schedule 22-24 hours of training a year - its 2hrs/month or one night a month. In the case above - that was attending every normally scheduled training event.

  11. #31
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    I wish we had a system in place. It would be helpful if people would let us know when they are done. Most of them are just never seen again. Keep their pagers, lights and dress shirts. One guy who hasn't shown his face in about a month just got nice new bunkers from the dept. We have tried calling him, texting him, even emails and he won't reply to anything. some firefighters see him at the bar on saturday nights, but he wont talk to anyone. My problem is, I want his bunkers. I had a nice set of morning prides, but unfortunately my coat got burned pretty good on the front in a house fire yesterday, and I would like to take his.

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdschmidt View Post
    One guy who hasn't shown his face in about a month just got nice new bunkers from the dept.
    I'm sure a visit from a fellow wearing a badge and a gun would be productive. The value of what he hasn't returned might even put his larceny in the grand theft range. Even if it doesn't, it won't look good on his record.

    Call law enforcement and file a complaint. Just make sure you have a record that you issued the gear to him.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

    Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

  13. #33
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    We have a lawyer on our department. Usually a letter from him makes our stuff magically turn up a few days later

    With all the people without good bunkers on our dept. it seems like a shame to just have a set sitting on the rack when we go to calls. We are ordering 10 new sets soon, but we have to decide which 10 get them out of the 40 members.

  14. #34
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    As the Assistant Chief, I can usually only give work details or minor disciplinary actions. We carry probably 50-60 so called "active" members (Trained with FF1/EMT and Fit tested and have gear) but in reality, only about 20 really participate. And unfortunately some of the leaders of our department are nervous about tossing these people...I guess they like to see that fat membership list. I call BS, I wanna toss probably 20 people just on principle. It's not like Volunteering at a Soup Kitchen, lives and property depend on your dedication to what YOU signed up for...

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by hwoods View Post
    About 14 years from now, remember that......

    All 4 of our Daughters married into the Fire Service, and 3 out of 4 are/were members themselves. Grandkids are now involved, with the oldest Grandson recently cleared to Drive all Apparatus. It appears to run in the Family, His 2 year old Daughter gets in the Drivers seat and doesn't want to get out....
    Being one of the 4, hopefully after raising my older kids and 15yrs later, i may be at a point to start checking the stations here in va, and trying it again. Its easier to get a sitter for 1 kid on occasion than 2, or if in a class can arrange with his schedules with his dad. (works out of town) my daughter temp went to station 6, while my son went to 1 and 5. Only thing is fire or EMS. I am still in decient shape but would need to get some gear out of storage and work at it prior, but may be a plan. Hey Dad, oops, I mean Chief, I may need a referral..

  16. #36
    Forum Member Rice09's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tree68 View Post
    If they want to "just volunteer," there are plenty of organizations that will be glad to see them.

    I assemble a spreadsheet of each member's responses each year which goes to our commissioners. You'd think some of them would be embarrassed by their own numbers, but a lot don't even seem to care.

    In fact, I'm convinced that some of them think I do it to showcase my own numbers (which are high, but that's another story).
    I'm in the same boat. There are comments made to a few of the guys who can go to almost all of the calls. Some guys have that opportunity and some don't. What I find interesting are those who could make the time and choose not to go to uneventful calls, yet turn their nose up at a few of the guys who make 99% of them. As if to say "suck up." While in my head I'm thinking that some people just love the job and want to help unconditionally.

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