Neither are most firefighters.
Originally Posted by LaFireEducator
We are paid to staff firehouses and apparatus, to maintain our facilities, apparatus and equipment, to be prepared to immediately respond to fire, rescue and/or EMS situations and to respond and operate at such incidents. Some of us also perform other duties like fire safety education, building inspections, hydrant inspections, hose testing, etc.
Yes, there are times in which many of us don't have actual "work" needing to be performed and may enjoy some time watching TV or catching some Zs, but having "downtime" is not the same thing as specifically being paid to do "non-work".
I don't think anybody would disagree, but that doesn't mean pay and benefits cuts should be in order.
Sorry to say it, but when you look at most firefighter's postions in most deparrtments, we have a pretty good life at work compared to plumbers, construction workers and many other positions that may be paid more.
Yes, there are examples of what could be considered "overreach" or "unreasonable" demands by some Locals. However, most are rather reasonable about how they conduct business. Additionally, there are also many examples of "overreach" and "unreasonable" demands by municipal administrators.
I don't want to turn this into a anti-career thread, but we have to look honestly at what we do. Should we be paid well given the risk? Sure. But there are unions out there that quite frankly, have pushed the envelope and now the citizens are looking critically at what we recieve for compenation, and are pushing back, and in some cases, it's justified.
The citizens in many cases are pushing back because they have been fed a lot of propaganda by various sources and are not always basing that push back on actual facts. We commonly see the extreme examples, like somebody retiring "young" and with a pension close to or more than what their regular base pay was. However, the reality is that most guys aren't retiring "young" and when they do, they retire with a rather nominal pension and no Social Security benefits.
I don't think anybody is saying that you should organize simply to support other career FFs and the Union.
This thread is about unions, and I stated quite frankly that we have no need for a union in my department as we have an excellent relationsip with management, and have most if not all of the "benefits" of being unionized without being unionized .We have good wages and benefits, input on development of operational policies, input on budgeting and purchasing and have no issues with disciplinary procedures, yet there are those that somehow continue to say that we should be unionized, if for no other reason, to suppor other career firefighters and the union.