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  1. #1
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    Default Unfair Custody Ruling For Being A Firefighter

    I am writing to express my frustration in the court system of Prince George's County Maryland for a custody ruling reversed on a brother firefighter. This brother is a member of Local 36 in Washington D.C. and the judge stated that he didn't have the time to spend with his children because of his work schedule as a firefighter. Excuse me but the last time I checked most departments work either 8 hour days or shift work, which in essence gives firefighters more flexibility to be with their kids. Secondly why did the judge reverse his decision based on the brothers profession? Sisters and brothers we need to write letters to the I.A.F.F. President Harold Schaitberger asking him to support Local 36 and this brother and if you have any similar custody matters please convey this to Mr. Schaithberger as well. This case is the second of its kind in the Country and is scheduled to be heard in Annapolis Maryland in December. This is
    a landmark case and if allowed to pass will effect all of us and our families. Please write, E-mail him or call at www.iaff.org or write him at International Association of Firefighters 1750 New York Avenue N.W. Washington D.C. 20006 202-737-8484. Also President Raymond Sneed of Firefighters Association District of Columbia Local 36 can be reached at 202-635-8500 or their address is 2120 Bladensburg Road N.E. Suite 210 Washington D.C. 20018 or Email raysneed@iafflocal36.com.


  2. #2
    Forum Member FireCapt1951retired's Avatar
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    Tell me about it. I lost custody back in "84" because I was a firefighter (work schedule excuse). Apparently things haven't changed.

  3. #3
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    It's amazing that something like this still happens in divorce cases. THis is a situation where an arrangement can easily be reached for the tours of duty that a firefighter works. I have a firefighter on my group who lost his wife to leukemia in his probationary year. He has two small children under the age of 5. He has arrangements with sitters to take care of the kids while he is at work (my sister in law is one of them). He spends a lot of time with his kids.

    The judge in this case must be either a "feminazi", "femicommie" or suffer from RIS (rectocranial inversion syndrome)!
    ‎"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."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

  4. #4
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    Ya...know...this could just as easily happen to a "sister" in the fire biz. Why would ones occupation make them any less of a parent? Good parenting isn't made based on the job that a person works. I know a couple of brothers who have custody of their kids and they seem to make the necessary arrangements to provide the care their kids need. Those kids get as much or more care from their custodial fathers as those who work 9-5.

  5. #5
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    It does happen to women, although I haven't heard of it happening to a sister in the fire service. Remember when Marsha Clark lost custody of her daughters because of her OJ-related work load?
    Whoever you are, whatever you do, it's bull%&^%&^%&^%.

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber NCRSQ751's Avatar
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    It does happen to women. I know of one that was a paramedic working a 24/48 shift. Her ex-hubby decided that if she was gone 24 hours at a time when his official work hours were 9-5 he could be a better parent (despite the actual long hours he put in). Her daycare was her mother and the kid was well adjusted. She ended up having to quit her job to keep custody.
    Susan Lounsbury
    Winston-Salem Rescue Squad
    Griffith Volunteer FD

  7. #7
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    I really hope the judge on that case realy thinks this whole thing through. It took a incident at the WTC to bring the nation to see the life of a FF. It's almost if they are going to put time and money before a human life. Fire Dept's are underfunded and underpaid? There is no other profession on earth that compairs to a FF. Face it folks, noone I know got rich being a FF. I am a Volly. I do it because I care. It may not allways be convienient for me or my family or my employer or the fool that has something more important to so that he cannot give me the right-of -way. FF have a drive that is uncomparible to any other profession. IF THIS GOES THROUGH, IT WOULD BE HORRIBLE FOR THE FF PROFESSION. NOONE SHOULD BE DISCRIMINATED AGAINST FOR CARING SO MUCH AS TO BE A FF. I WOULD LIKE FOR SOMEONE TO COME FORWARD AND SAY ALL THE SOULS LOST AT THE WTC DIDN'T CARE. THEY DIED BECAUSE THEY DID.
    33057123

  8. #8
    Forum Member joejoe33's Avatar
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    Default

    I don't know all of circumstances involved with this case. It sounds like a brother got a raw deal here. I'd be happy to write a letter to Schaitberger on our brothers' behalf.

    In the interim, I have a couple of suggestions for the brother to speak with his lawyer about.

    (1) A firefighter or paramedic has the right to have his visitation time schedule equal to standard visitation.
    Standard visitation is usually the first, the third, and the fifth weekend and one day during the week for two hours after school.

    Due to a firefighters fluctuating work schedule it is impossible to comply with standard visitation. Under the law and a judges discretion, the firefighter or paramedic is entitled to time equal to standard visitation.

    (2) This one I really like. "The first right of refusal" You can also obtain this through the courts easily. If the former spouse needs a babysitter, she has to call and offer it to you first, before hiring a babysitter. You have the right to accept or refuse, but she has to offer you first. This allows more visitation time with your children.

    I do not have custody, but these two things definetly help me have more time with my child and comply with the divorce decree.

    It's worth a phone call to an attorney to check it out.



    [ 10-23-2001: Message edited by: joejoe33 ]
    joejoe33

    Comments and opinions are mine and do not represent the agency or IAFF local that I am affiliated with.

  9. #9
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    You mean to tell me that we don't sacrifise enough daily, now child custody is an issue. Well, I intend to email and write about this.

    I wish best of luck to all involved.

    Stay safe
    Bless all of our Fallen Brothers and Sisters. You will not be forgotten

  10. #10
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    My dad's a fire fighter, so this is coming from his little girls' point of view. Daddy gave me a lot of inspiration as I grew up. And he still does now that I'm an adult. He proved to me that you can do ANYTHING that you want to as long as your heart and soul is in it. One of the ways he did this was by becoming a volly at nearly fifty. (He may shoot me for that.) And since then he has shown me so much strength and will power. Even before this he showed me much more than my biological father ever has. Out of the two, my step dad is truly my Daddy.

    I'm sure you're wondering where this is going. If a man can show all of this to a child that is only his through love, imagine what a man can do to a child that he helped to create. Imagine all that a child can learn from the sacrifices that his/her parents make for strangers. Imagine the unselfish love that a child can learn through their parents willingness to help a fellow human being. Imagine what a child can learn from the men in women in yellow suits and big red machines....

    Thanks Daddy
    Amy Ponder
    Volunteer Fire Fighter/First Responder's Little Girl

  11. #11
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    This is from the son of a fire fighter. As i was growing up my father was always there for me. We spent alot of time together and i dont see how being a fire fighter should be held against a man or woman.

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