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  1. #1
    fire44
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    Post CAREERS ABLE TO VOLUNTEER

    My concern is are there any stipulations through the IAFF about one of its members being active with another volunteer department. For what it matters i reside in ohio and my friend told me that IAFF members are not allowed to be on volunteer depts. I know several firemen that do this and dont see that being a true statement. If anything i would think it would come from your fulltime department's policy if there is one. please let me know if anyone has any info on this. thanks.


  2. #2
    NCRSQ751
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    It can't possibly be against IAFF policy. I belong to a volunteer technical rescue squad and a volunteer fire department. Between them I know of at least a half dozen volunteers. My Chief at the Rescue Squad is a career truck company captain.

    My guess is that it's a local/departmental thing.

    ------------------
    Susan Bednar
    Forsyth Rescue Squad (Captain)
    NCTF-1
    Griffith Volunteer FD

  3. #3
    Corvin
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    Post

    The IAFF members are not to volunteer their time to a vollie dept.

    That said I do both. I drank too much beer one night and cornered Al Whitehead (the last IAFF president) at our state union convention and gave him the ole "I live in a town of 400 people, they are never going to have a career dept, I refuse to say to my neighbors, 'hell no I won't help'.
    I volunteer Al what do you say about that?"

    He said he understood the reality of life. Now he could also been afraid I was going to drool on him and he wanted me away, hard to say http://www.firehouse.com/forums/wink.gif

    Be safe
    Chris

  4. #4
    benson911
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    IAFF firefighters are not supposed to volunteer to do their job for free on their days off. Of course, who's to tell you what you should do when you are not at work. Remember, you are doing the most dangerous job in the world and your union has fought hard to get you the time off you deserve to make sure you are rested and ready to come to work for your next shift.

    If you don't mind the risk and you don't need the sleep, then volunteer. But, if you are working part-time in a combination department with an IAFF local in place, you are harming a brother and that's against IAFF bylaws!

  5. #5
    gunnyv
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    Post

    My career dept's local basically forced 3 guys to give up their part time jobs with ambulance companies. 2 worked for the co. that services our own district, so it was real obvious. The union told them they couldn't even work as dispatchers for them, they are a "rival" organization. We lost our ambulance to their predecessor in the 70s, guys were laid off, so I can understand that. But the other guy was working for a volunteer ambulance in his hometown 20 miles away. He organized the volunteers and was head of their union, they told him to quit or resign from ours. He quit the volunteers.
    My problem with this is that we have 20 guys working in building trades, taking jobs from union tradesmen, but that's fine with the union.

  6. #6
    Brian Dunlap
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    Post

    I Personaly think that Career Guys who want to Volunteer should be allowed to. It is there choice --- Who is the IAFF to say what a person can or can not do on there Off time.
    Thats F**ed Up.

  7. #7
    dgrant
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    Post

    The IAFF is a labor union, pure and simple. A labor union exists to protect jobs, protect the safety of the members and work to enhance benefits. As an IAFF member, I do believe that they have a policy that members are not to volunteer, though I've never seen it in writing. I'm not saying it doesn't exist, I just haven't seen it.

    That being said, there is no enforcement arm of the IAFF that is on the lookout for paid union members volunteering. The only time this issue would come up is if a complaint is made by a fellow union member.

    This is, of course, a matter of personal choice, weighing the positives and negatives of each unique situation. We all know that small communities simply cannot afford full time, paid fire protection and ems services.

    However, in my humble opinion, an IAFF member that volunteers in a combination department is in essence providing manpower that allows the governing body (city or county) to keep from fully funding a paid fire and ems service. Just my opinion.

  8. #8
    Tim Soule
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    Post

    I, also, was a career ff in Ohio and a volunteer as well. I understand the IAFF position that they would prefer not to have their members volunteer from a labor union standpoint, one issue not raised yet is the issue of fairness to your career city...by volunteering, you increase your exposures thereby increasing the liability for your career city. Of course that depends somewhat on how much you volunteer...The argument that you're enabling the community in which you volunteer to not go paid doesn't hold true for mot volunteer communities, I dont believe. Anyway, interesting topic...brought back lots of memories good and bad. Am living large as a career guy in Montana and no, I don't volunteer anymore(my wife made me promise not too http://server.firehouse.com/forums/smile.gif)

  9. #9
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    An opinion that you or your local IAFF has is one thing, but here are the LEGAL rulings that have been made regarding this issue...

    1) It is ILLIGAL for an employeer to prevent one of his/her employees to volunteer. Doing so falls under the category of discrimination.

    2) It is, however, ILLIGAL for a person to work and volunteer in the SAME town in the SAME job description. (Example: Firefighter Jones cannot work and volunteer in the same town as a fire fighter. He CAN work in one town and volunteer in another as a firefighter. He CAN also work as a firefighter and volunteer on an ambulance).

    - Turk II

  10. #10
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    A little side note related to this...

    Some of you might remember the church fire in River Oaks, TX that killed 3 volunteer firefighters. 2 of those firefighter were paid Fort Worth firefighters as well.

    Since they were killed while working for the city of River Oaks. None of the LODD benefits from Fort Worth applied. I'm not an expert on all the money/benefits that were involved by any means, but a lot of legal ramblings went on between whether Ft. Worth should pay, etc...etc...

    It's just something to think about. If I lived in a city that used volunteer's I'd do it also. However, if your volunteer dept. doesn't provide any financial support in the event of your LODD...can your family make it without you? Just something to think about.

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber E229Lt's Avatar
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    By serving as a volunteer firefighter you are in violation of the IAFF Constitution and By-Laws, Article XV, Section 3.

  12. #12
    Forum Member FyredUp's Avatar
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    It is nobody's business what you do off duty as long as it is not illegal.

    Period, end of story.

    Of course common sense says you do not volly in a career union FD. And of course you do not volly back into your own career FD.

    We never seem to be too concerned about our IAFF Brothers and Sisters working as non-union members in other trades. I wonder how their unions feel about that?

    By the way...in my part-time job I am a member of that Union. Card carrying, dues paying member...Are you?

    Stay safe,

    FyredUp
    “The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live.” Leo F. Buscaglia

    This place gets weirder and weirder every day...

  13. #13
    MembersZone Subscriber E229Lt's Avatar
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    FIRE44's original question was,

    "are there any stipulations through the IAFF about one of its members being active with another volunteer department..."

    My short answer was simply,

    "IAFF Constitution and By-Laws, Article XV, Section 3."

    I was not saying I believe it is right, wrong, legal or moral. I just answered the question.

    FyredUP states/asks,

    "By the way...in my part-time job I am a member of that Union. Card carrying, dues paying member...Are you?"

    YES I AM.

  14. #14
    Forum Member FyredUp's Avatar
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    E229lt,

    What exactly does that section of the by-laws say?

    Thanks,

    FyredUp
    “The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live.” Leo F. Buscaglia

    This place gets weirder and weirder every day...

  15. #15
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    "IAFF Constitution and By-Laws, Article XV, Section 3."
    The IAFF can have their own by-laws and constitution, but any local, state, or federal law can override the organization's bylaws and constitution.

    In this case, there is a federal law which prevents the IAFF from saying career firefighters cannot belong to a volunteer company.

    - Turk II

  16. #16
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    With many states passing heart/lung and cancer bills, one day a career firefighter who is an active volunteer will be denied a retirement benifit because of the extra risk he willingly accepted. You can't expect a pension system or the career dept (city) to cover you when you volunteer. The pension systems will not grant an injury or disability retirement, if heart, lung or cancer is used. I don't volunteer as a choice of family. I'm not going to put my family at risk by volunteering on my days off or put my pension at risk in the future. If the dept is 100% volunteer then I have no problem its you buisness, but don't expect me to back you if you try to claim a retirement from the accumlated hazards of your career job, when you added to this while volunteering. Some career depts will also keep track if sick leave injuries occured while volunteering in another dept. A very fine line that many 100% volunteer firefighters don't take into account. Why should my dept pay OT etc because I got hurt volunteering??? Food or thought.

  17. #17
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    If it's the OT for injuries that happen while volunteering thats the worry, are you allowed to drive to work, I know more people that have been in accidents than have been hurt fighting fire. What about skiing, softball, and anything else more dangerous than watching TV.

    Take a bite of that food.

  18. #18
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    Well I guess this will start a fight, but I've been thinking about this for some time, so here goes, I here this garbage about Careers F/F's volunteering, being hurt while volunteering and the related burden of liability, OT and so on that it places on the Career dept.

    What about Career F/F's that spend every off duty hour teaching. I know for a fact that there are a lot of injuries and exposures related to teaching, the same types and numbers you see with volunteering, but yet because they were teaching, that's OK.

    I guess it's because they're getting paid for it by the repsective contractor, school or academy.

    Please tell me what the difference is, they are still off work, causing OT for their brothers, increasing the liability to the career dept and so on and so on.

    This old adage that by volunteering, you are eliminating a Career position is BS !!! Some municipalties can't afford any Career positions, while others can only afford their present staffing levels. The reason any Union wants to increase their membership is strictly monetarily!!!

    Lets put all this damn Career vs Volunteer s*** to bed !!!!
    These views/ opinions are my own and not those of my employer/ department.

  19. #19
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    I have heard the same reports Irish. I did not read a single bash on volunteers in Irish's post, but it sure did bring out the career haters. He even said if you volunteer in a 100% dept thats OK. In most career depts you must get permission to work outside the FD. You don't need permission to volunteer in another dept. If a training academy job was causing OT, they would and can stop you! You guys spout off with no facts. The heart and lung stuff is real facts of life. State pension board members (not the FD or PD members) usually the political appointees have been on this for a while.

  20. #20
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    I usually don't respond to plain dumb responses but..
    ASICIT: City's, States, and I don't contribute to the softball players pension or skiers pension. If they have a pension system let me know. We do fund the Police and Firefighters retirement system. When these state board members notice a possible problem, history has shown they will enforce it to keep the system sound!!!
    RES7CUE: I'm glad to hear you want to end the s***, so why don't you take your own advise and stop. Its uninformed people like you who spout off with no facts or anything, just plain hate. The original topic was volunteering and the IAFF. I stated that in 100% volunteer depts in my opinion its fine. The rest of my post was concerning pension benifits for the future and what is coming down the line. You don't like it??? tough, it doesn't even apply to you, but it is relavent to the topic unlike your emotional crap. As far as training academy's go, the 4-5 guys I know who do training on their off time say, smokehouse is a small part of FF training done at the academy. No injuries yet, that is why they are allowed to continue. We have had 2 members injuried as volunteers. No big numbers, but at lest I'm dealing facts not just s***.

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