A career firefighter who contracts a covered form of cancer for example and has also been serving as a volunteer firefighter could find themselves stuck in a battle over which department's WC insurance is going to cover the illness or how much each will cover.
A career firefighter who contracts the same covered form of cancer and works off-duty as a carpenter will not be in the same situation. Their FD employer would cover the illness.
As such, the ability to have someone else, at minimum, share the financial impact of an occupational illness would be a welcome situation for the employer and not having any question over who will cover the illness would be a preferable situation for the employee.
If a city is able to save money and they can divert their financial obligation away, they will.
Also, while I have never seen an issue over heart/lung/presumptive cancer, I have seen the city fight injuries that occurred in the line-of-duty, that should have been a no-brainer for duty-disability.
I know that there have been "battles" over some LODDs that involved older firefighters and cardiac events and somebody trying to get out of paying LODD benefits by claiming the FF had a cardiac history and that the heart attack was the result of "life style" factors rather than firefighting stress.
So, it's really not hard to see an employer or their insurance representative trying to exploit a volunteer affiliation in order to reduce the financial impact of an occupational illness.
as far as the carpenter (or anything for that matter) what about hidden thing such as asbestos that may not have been know was there. thinking along the lines of cancer given the response, would that affect things. because someone was saying that on a VFD they would be open to these things, why are these other jobs thought to not have harms that can relate to harms that would arise in the fire department? curious, not trying to start an argument here.
In regards to cancer specifically as an occupational illness, one reason that there isn't as much "concern" about these other jobs is that workers in those other occupations aren't contracting and dying of cancer at a rate well above that of the general population, particularly with regard to certain types of cancer.
This is occurring with firefighters. I don't have the facts and figures off the top of my head, but a firefighter is at a significantly higher risk for several specific types of cancer than other occupations and the rate of cancer among firefighters is higher than the rate of cancer among the population in general.
The belief within the fire service (at least the career side) is that our duties as firefighters is exposing us to whatever is causing this "difference". As such, the potential exposure to whatever the cause is would be present in the volunteer setting since they would have the same occupational exposures, but the carpenter and other occupations wouldn't.
1. The IAFF does not have a "career only" mentality. Perhaps you should research and read their current policy on volunteering in your home community. In addition, I know of a couple of departments that have IAFF paid staff and volunteers.
2. Volunteers do protect about 90% of the land mass in America, but paid guys protect about 90% of the population.
3. You should be disallowed to ever type the word "bro" in anything pertaining to the fire service.
Actually your data is incorrect.
According to the USFA, all-career and primarily career combo departments cover 67% of the population. All-volunteer and primarily volunteer combo departments cover the remaining 33%.
Volunteer departments represent 78% of the departments with primarily volunteer department about another 8%.
As far as #1, when I see that volunteer departments with large budgets bordering areas covered by career personnel are not classified as rival organizations, which they are, I'll believe that the IAFF is not anti-volunteer.
As far as brothers, I know who they are, and most of them are not career personnel.
In my state, we finally got a Cancer Presumption Law for firefighters passed last year after a 20+ year fight. Our State Association (PPFFA) was at the front of that battle the whole way. We could've gotten it passed years sooner if coverage for the volunteers was removed from the Bill. We're so anti-volunteer that we refused to remove coverage for them from the Bill even though it meant the Bill wouldn't be passed. Now we all have coverage and there's even a provision for (limited duration) retroactive coverage.
I've got a number of volunteer and non-IAFF combo departments in my region and none of them are "classified as rival organizations". In fact, with the exception of the major city department (large enough to not need it, but has provided it on occasion), the IAFF departments in the region routinely provide and/or receive automatic and/or mutual aid from volunteer and non-IAFF combo departments.
Too soon for a group hug?:D
Only animosity I've seen are volunteers aimed towards career and it's always a few bad apples and never shared by the entire department.
What does everybody think about this scenario..... An IAFF member works part-time at a combo department that is also an IAFF represented department. (Basically, IAFF members working part-time in another IAFF shop.) Now imagine this... those IAFF members working part-time have rank over the IAFF members at the combo department. (They also earn a significantly higher wage) The IAFF members working part-time occupy many promoted positions over the full-time IAFF members at the department.
Should this be an accepted practice?
I had a similar scenario. I worked part time as a rescue officer for a while, and was not part of the local of a neighboring dept. I was over their guys, but we never had an issue, or at least it never got back to my scab self. Did it for about 6 months until admin decided to move the unit elsewhere over low call volume. The interesting part is that I was not union at all at that time. The guys all knew this, and were trying to change by-laws to get me in, but then the truck went tits up.