1. #26
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    Let me get this strait DCFF, your going to quit a paid firefighting position because they dont want you to volunteer in the same jurisdiction. Dont you think you should maybe reconsider before you take so drastic a step.

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    Red face

    Not all station's in PG are like what Mr. 1664 has said. No one should have to work under those conditions if they are as drastic as he says. Yes there are lemons on both side's but property distruction and fist fights? On a daily basis? I find this hard to believe.......PG is run very differently then MC also........In MC the volunteers tell the career what to do. Not quite that way in PG it's all in training and rank. In PG it's the volunteer money that get's equipment, training, dishes, apparatus, etc. The county is made up of mostly low income families so taxe income isn't much and getting something from the county is like pulling teeth. There are bigger issue's to be faught here that 1619 could be spending more of their important time on, especially since they didn't even name everyone who scabs they only selected a few.

    Pg will never be able to go to an all career department, hell they lower their standards to try and get a class of recruits and can't get enough people, let alone have the money to pay for it!

    I am not a scab just a volunteer.....in my blood, don't cause any problems and do my job with proffesionalism and dignity.

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    Default HUH?

    Originally posted by Smoke286
    Let me get this strait DCFF, your going to quit a paid firefighting position because they dont want you to volunteer in the same jurisdiction. Dont you think you should maybe reconsider before you take so drastic a step.
    Where did he say he was quitting? He works for D.C. He's not volunteering in the same jurisdiciton....Don't you think you should at least have a clue before offering advice?

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    I wasn't going to comment on this since I don't live in PG but since it is once again turning into a paid vs. vollie debate, I'll throw my 2 cents in:

    How can a union (or an employer for that matter) tell it's members what they can and cannot do on their day off?

    Most of these guys are serving the communities they live in, why fault them for that? They have experience, training and expertise that benefits their local department. Most of them were on their volunteer departments before they got their paid jobs in other areas. Should they just abandon their friends and neighbors in the volunteer department after they get a paid job?
    FTM-PTB-DTRT

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    Had a chat with a Lt. that is a IAFF member this morning. He has been on the job for over 20 years. When asked about the PGFD thing he said that it has been tried before but the courts declared it unconstitutional. I guess they must be trying a new approach.

  6. #31
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    Lightbulb hmmmm...

    Tillerman-1664, if I was in error in saying that MC doesn't have a problem with their firefighters being volunteers in other jurisdictions, I stand corrected - I was only making that observation by what I know, which is that there are quite a few MC firefighters that are volunteers in Frederick County and other jurisdictions near Montg. County (and Frederick County is a combination department, as well). Sorry to hear that you have such a harsh work environment on a daily basis, but like CMC122 said, not all stations in PG are like that - I sincerely hope things get better for you. One other thing you said has me confused.... I REALLY can't believe that the IAFF pays Workers Compensation and tuition for the volunteers I always thought that the Maryland State Firemen's Association paid the insurance for workers comp and the tuition-reimbursement program -otherwise, how would the vollies in the rural counties with all volunteer systems get any of those benefits?

    IN&UP - You bring up an excellent point, but the same questions would be there no matter what a person does on his off time - what about a firefighter that works construction on his off days (and there are quite a few of them) and he develops tinnitus, and claims it to be job-related from firefighting? Heart problems, high blood pressure and many other chronic health problems that can be caused by firefighting can also be caused by many other vocations (or "hobbies", as MIKEY likes to say). It does lend food for thought, though, on workers comp claims being brought by someone who is both a volunteer and a career firefighter.

    WTFD10 - well said - it just doesn't make sense to me to tell a person he can't do something that provides a benefit or service to his community and he might even be able to... (should I say it?)... teach the volunteers a thing or two.
    - Remember our brothers in FDNY -

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    I believe one of the big problems was posted on the Kentland site a few months back. They moved a rig to another station to save the County OT. Thereby taking 4 brothers OT away, a good chunk of change in anyone's pocket.
    If you're a Union truck driver and someone volunteers to drive for free, taking away OT for you, you'd be ticked too. Same thing in any union shop. I don't see how you can be a union firefighter in one juridiction and then take money from a union firefighter in another. I'm sure there are those in the membership that would like to see every ff in the US be a paid IAFF member.
    Another item for the IAFF overall is health and wellness of the members. If a man has lung problems, whose jurisdiction did it come from. Do you only get 1/2 your benefits from a diability pension?

    Personally I'd like to see the rules change. But until they do, I'm staying a one dept man holding my union card.
    FTM-PTB-EGH-RTB

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  8. #33
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    CMC122:
    I pubically apologize here. I was not trying to imply that all volunteers in PG County are bad. (Thus the comment "...there are apples in BOTH baskets that are bad...") You are also correct in the differences in our two jurisdictions however, our jurisdictions are not that different from each other. The majority of the money may come from different locations such as tax bases, fundraisers, etc... but as much as I don't want to admit it, (as a career man) career people in Montgomery and PG County are there to supplement the volunteers. The volunteers have most of the political control. Please forgive me, I am not trying to start a volunteer/career thing; I am not trying to open that can of worms. I was just trying to bring to attention all the individuals across the country who read the posts, that our systems are much much different than what they are used to.

    Thefyreman:
    To you I apologize if my post was misleading. I am not saying that the IAFF pays out the Workman's Comp money or tuitions. What I was trying to say is that as a local, when we go to the bargaining table with the county, we achieve better Workman's Comp benefits, more tuition assistance, better safety issues even the right to where Pro Boots. This directly or even indirectly passes to the volunteers in my system. Montgomery County gives them all of these items as well as us.
    "VERY PROUD" Union member of the I.A.F.F. as well as my local 1664.
    Notice this is my CAREER not my hobby. Help a burned child. Get involed...not sure how just ask. Marshall
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    Let me try a different tactic here. There are alot of people from across the country reading written text and drawing conclusions that are emotionally based. Let me try explaining this way. As much as it looks like a career/volunteer thing. IT"S NOT!! It's a career/career thing. I was in Chicago when the resolution was passed. I was at the state level when the president of Local 36 was asked to be there. He copped out and sent someone in his place.

    Let me try and paint you a picture. CMC122, if you wouldn't mind with your help (for the sake of discussion). Where my shoes... you are a career fire fighter in Montgomery County and I am a career fire fighter in DC. We both belong to the IAFF. You have alot of pride and honor in the IAFF just as much as I'm sure you do in real life for the fine organization you belong to in PG county. Now, on my days off from working downtown, I come to the volunteer corporation you are "assigned" to as a career man. I am beligerant, rude, abnoxious. I use the toilet without flushing it, expecting you to clean it. I trash the day room, watch office and kitchen also expecting you to clean it. I bump you out of your riding assignment without telling you. We run calls, I expect you to pack the hose, clean the gear and get everything set up and ready for the next call as I walk out the door to go home. Do I have to deal with these things as a career person in DC? No! Why? Hmmmmm.....

    Now we both belong to the IAFF. I am supposed to have the same pride, honor and respect that you do for the IAFF. Now, after experiencing all of this I ask you two weeks later to stand beside me as a union "brother" and help me fight DC government, Federal government even Chief Few for better work practices, more money, whatever. What would you say to me? Personally, I hope you would tell me to "go fly a kite" after the way I treated you and your "brothers and sisters."

    Now folks, granted this isn't the exact case in every fire station in the DC/Metropolitan area. This is just one of many conflicts that exist. We don't care if you VOLUNTEER! But DON"T CARRY A CARD AND CLAIM TO BE MY BROTHER AND STAND ON THE SAME ISSUES WHEN YOU LEAVE WORK AND YOU TREAT ME AND MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS WITH BLATENT DISREPECT! PICK A SIDE... PERIOD! If you're going to volunteer, I respect that. Turn in your card and don't claim to be my brother. That's all this issue is about. If you have any information or have been mislead otherwise, then bring it to someone's attention so that it can be corrected.

    Marshall
    "VERY PROUD" Union member of the I.A.F.F. as well as my local 1664.
    Notice this is my CAREER not my hobby. Help a burned child. Get involed...not sure how just ask. Marshall
    www.fdnyengine6.org
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  10. #35
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    Here's the side I've picked:

    1) Recruit and appoint the best possible applicants, regardless of race, gender, or creed
    2) Train at the tasks expected of them to the highest possible standards
    3) Equip them with the best possible equipment to do the tasks they are assigned
    4) Hold them to the highest possible standards of conduct
    5) Organize and deploy them in such a manner to conduct the tasks they are assigned safely

    I don't see where a paycheck comes into play here.

    L1619 is not looking to increase their unit staffing or the number of firefighters attending at fires. They are looking to increase the number of L1619 members. To do this they are attempting to harass, and hopefully remove, IAFF members who volunteer in the county, as these members are often the leaders of volunteer companies. This started as personal retribution by a very few L1619 members against L36 members who tend to be abrasive.

    If i believed that my volunteering in PG adversely affected ANYONE, Union, non-union, career, or volunteer, i'd have left long ago. I might even leave if i thought that my volunteering in PG adversely affected anyone's livelihood...anyone familiar with PG's payscale, especially as compared to this area, knows that PG is at or near the tops. In fact, the only reason that they have such an attactive compensation package, is that there are relatively few career firefighters per capita. Every pay day, a career f/f in PG should thank the volunteers for allowing him to get such a nice check.

    L1619 members talk of fellow union member's "retarding the progress" of L1619. However, there are no "firefighter" issues that PG volunteers oppose...the volunteers are all for getting the best equipment, training, etc. The individual compensation of L1619 members is top-notch, in no small part due to the presence of a large volunteer force. The only thing the volunteers "retard" is a very large, terribly underfunded, all-career department. (but L1619 would get a larger $$$$$)

    One final point, at this moment, should there be a fire in my house...
    First due station: Wagon-pumper, 8 volunteers
    Second due station: Truck, 8 volunteers
    Third due station: Wagon-pumper, Truck, 20 volunteers
    Fourth due station: Engine only, 3 vol, 1 career
    Fifth due station: Engine only, 2 vol, 2 career

  11. #36
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    Fortunately for most of the career firefighters in this country Resolution 43 is not an issue, but it isn’t really that difficult to figure out. When all is said and done, it amounts to an internal disciplinary matter within the International Association of Firefighters.

    Resolution 43 is not anti-volunteer, it is anti-hypocrite. It merely reiterates existing IAFF by-laws and specifically names volunteer organizations in Prince George’s County, Maryland as among the “rival organizations” which had already been prohibited for years...and it passed unanimously.

    It just says that it is incompatible with the mission and goals of the IAFF for it's members to volunteer in a jurisdiction where another IAFF Local is organized. Those individuals who are in violation must choose...union member or volunteer.

    None of the parties involved are being dismissed from their career jobs nor are they even being forced to stop volunteering...they just can't belong to the union and disregard it's by-laws. What is the problem with that? They freely chose to be members of the International. If they can't abide by the rules they've got to go...pretty simple, huh? If they can't decide where their loyalties are, flip a coin!
    Last edited by SquadHog; 02-09-2002 at 07:20 PM.
    "Go ugly early."

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    As I've stated, I don't believe that the organizations listed in Resolution 43 are in fact, "rival organizations".

    I've been trying to do an internet search to find a definition of rival organization...i believe for unions, it is usually another union attempting to represent (and recieve dues from) members of an existing union, or competing for the same employees.

    The only thing i've found though, is worth sharing:

    "Confronted by weak administrative structures, fragile economies, and in some cases dangerous sources of domestic opposition, political leaders sought to entrench themselves in power by using the machinery of state to suppress or coopt any rival organization-be it an opposition party, a trades union, or even a major corporation. Rather than acknowledging the weakness of their position, and accepting the limitations on their power which this imposed, they chose to up the stakes and went for broke" (Clapham 1996a:57).

  13. #38
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    1664
    It's called CLOUT! I completely understand resolution 43. I completely understand the questionability of who is a brother/sister or not. (thanks again megan) But this basically comes down to an ethics issue almost.
    Being a member of a union involves so much more than your local, state or international associations. When your in a union you are a brother/sister to ALL unions. You ALL support each other be it a teacher or plumber or teamster. You don't drive around in non union manufactured cars, you don't shop at food lion, you support all unions. This is something that has been long forgotten in union leadership. That is clout, supporting ALL other unions.
    So now you have lines drawn between everyone organization and they are there own rivallry. I believe if clout were still in existence there wouldn't be this problem. No one would want to cross another family member.

    You are right in that people looking in on this do have a hard time understanding this situation. We are very unique departments with people who have to check thier EGO'S in at the door. That dosen't happen and probably never will. It is wrong in my personal opinion to treat a brother/sister wrong for any reason be it career or volunteer. And you are right this isn't a career vs. volunteer issue. But people only look at what they want to see and they see "Rival Organization". Automatically sets tempers.

    I could ramble on and I may have made absolutely no sense to anyone but if you really sit back and look at the whole picture everything is messed up!So I leave you with this...

    Ignorance is no excuse.

  14. #39
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    Originally posted by CMC122


    Ignorance is no excuse.
    "TURE VERY TRUE" well said
    "VERY PROUD" Union member of the I.A.F.F. as well as my local 1664.
    Notice this is my CAREER not my hobby. Help a burned child. Get involed...not sure how just ask. Marshall
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    Hehehe.

    This is an example of, quite simply, why there's no more fun place to volunteer than PG.

    And Tillerman 1664, I just can't resist: What the HECK do you tiller in OLNEY? The back of that quint?

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    When a union fights for
    safety (you're safer with more staffing, career or vol)
    working conditions (hmmm. volunteer couches, tvs, internet)
    wages (the best in the region)
    I can get behind it.

    When a union fights merely to increase its' membership...
    that's when I stop being union proud, and start being American proud...

    #1 any volunteers who resign from the county will not be replaced with career staffing
    #2 while i support your right and need to run down the road with more than 3 personnel (which you should have fought for long ago)
    you cannot tell me exactly what effect that one additional or a dozen, or a hundred additional career firefighters would have on the likelihood of me dying in a fire or my house burning to the ground.

    Is it numbers? Is the county gonna staff each of the closest three stations to my house with 12 f/f s each?

    Is it training and performance? I can say, as a group, the career staff performs no better than the volunteers...and most of the newer career guys perform significantly worse.

    Someone said something about hypocracy earlier...
    ...hypocracy is claiming something is a safety issue, when it's really a money issue...
    ...I hope that the IAFF, who depends on the good will of the public for much of it's "clout", realizes what this can of worms is going to do to the publics perception of firefighters in general and the union specifically.

  17. #42
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    Post Resolution 43

    The resolution that Local 1619 of Prince George's County, Maryland only affects the volunteer stations in Prince George's County. The resolution does not prohibit any career firefighter from being a volunteer in any other county, such as Montgomery, Charles, St. Mary's, Anne Arundel, etc. So far nobody has told me why Local 1619 decided to have their resolution specifically state Prince George's.

    I don't think this was a good idea on the part of Local 1619. It forces a career firefighter who may work in DC, Arlington or Fairfax Virginia, etc., to make a choice. Why would a union in one jurisdiction attempt to force a career firefighter to make a choice? "Be a union man, or get out,” seems to be the sentiment. It sort of reminds me when my Father was a union steel worker and they were having problems with management. Management hired goons to intimidate the union workers and the goons said "Sign the contract or else."

    What would local 1619 have to say to the international if all the career people who volunteer in P.G. decided to turn in their union cards? That’s about 200-300 union members. It doesn't strengthen a union it weakens it. If there is a budget crunch and since the fire department union is in a weakened state guess where the politicians are going to cut first. It happens every time in every location, the fire department is the first one to get the ax regardless if they are paid or volunteer.

    In any situation there will be bad apples on both sides. I think both sides forget one thing especially after 09/11/01 we are all brothers and sisters and when that alarm goes off death makes no distinction whether you are a career, volunteer, male or female firefighter. The only ones we can trust are each other.

    This post is my own opinion and does not represent any official statement of my department.

  18. #43
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    Gee, let's see if we can figure out why these attitudes **** off union brothers. Let's say, just for fun, that we come set up shop right next to your place of business, be it plumbing, carpentry or lawyering, the place you make a living doing what you do, and start giving out the services you provide, only for free, because we need more of those services provided, and free is way better than paying for it. Soon people would flood our "free" service and you'd be down the road, and the hell with you, because the service you provided was valuable and the people couldn't live without it, and we're only better serving the peoples needs, because it's free now. Think you'd be ****ed off in short order? The union's main purpose is to protect it's members jobs, plain and simple. If you don't want to follow the rules, just say "no" and turn in your card.

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    If you're going to volunteer, I respect that. Turn in your card and don't claim to be my brother.
    When I first started reading these and other forums, one thing that struck me back then was what so many people have come to understand in the last few months- that being the brotherhood among firefighters. I always thought it was between ALL firefighters. But now I, John Q. Public, am being led to believe that there's only brotherhood when the parties involved all carry "cards." Silly me, I guess....

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    Originally posted by Grit


    Tillerman 1664, I just can't resist: What the HECK do you tiller in OLNEY? The back of that quint?
    Thats funny... LMAO
    "VERY PROUD" Union member of the I.A.F.F. as well as my local 1664.
    Notice this is my CAREER not my hobby. Help a burned child. Get involed...not sure how just ask. Marshall
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    Smile

    TILLERMAN-1664, You have done a fine job of setting the record straight - the issues here are much deeper than seen from my perspective. It seems like a lot of grief could have been avoided if everyone acted professionally (just because they are volunteers doesn't mean they can't perform in a professional manner). I guess I was lucky to have served as a volunteer in PG at a station that taught us to do our jobs in a professional manner, and our station was one of the ones that got along well with the career staff (and, to the best of my knowledge, still does). Keep up the good work.
    - Remember our brothers in FDNY -

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    Default Get a grip

    I don't see what is so complicated here other than people who don't know where their bread is buttered and volunteers who take great joy in seeing such idiotic disputes among career people because of searing jealousy that they themselves can't get career jobs. Most volunteers that I have seen who don't like card carrying career firefighters are usually the ones who can't get the card carrying jobs themselves. You know, the bruised ego squad. And don't give me that standard emotional love of community garbage when it comes to volunteering. Sell that crap to some misguided civilian. Many people who volunteer in fire and EMS do it because frankly, THEY LOVE IT. It has less to do with love of community and more to do with thrills, filling egos, getting noticed, etc. Admit it people. Thats the fact. And it works the same with many career people as well, except it's more fun getting paid to have an adrenalan rush. This issue is ridiculous. If you are a full time employee of a fire dept. why would you come off duty and do it for free in your own dept.or in some other career firefighters dept.. Does a Teamster drive a truck for free when he or she is off. Does a steel worker stop in at the plant and make steel when off. Some of you people are real idiots. How many union plumbers would show up at another union construction job and sweat pipes for free. What I always got a kick out of was vollies who would show up and make life miserable for union firefighters and then go and be big union guys at their own jobs and file grievances and walk picket lines. Talk about hypocracy. The same applies to career people who would go vollie in another dept. that has career people. The fact that the IAFF does not want it's membership to volunteer is a no brainer. The IAFF knows that some of the membership are going to volunteer but officially it's discouraged. Does the Teamsters want people driving trucks for free. Does the Carpenters Union want it's members moonlighting with non union construction companies. What about the United Mine Workers. You think they want people digging coal for free or working extra at a non union mining company. Some of you really need a reality check. In concept, the IAFF is no different than any other labor union except there is no history of violence or corruption that many other unions went through. My own IAFF Local has members who volunteer on their days off. As long as it is not done in our dept. or where another IAFF local may exsist it's generally not an issue. Now that is not a big problem here because we are the only paid dept. in the county. We have a few volunteers left over here in the city but we have no problems. Everyone tends to get along fine. So when some of our members go home to their suburban communities and volunteer, no one says anything because no ones job is being disrupted. I can see the problem in the metro DC area due to so many agencies with IAFF locals but then people need to make a choice. Either you want a career job or you want to be a volunteer. One cannot always have their cake and eat it and a choice must be made. I volunteer with my suburban dept. but then we have no IAFF local or paid people here and I NEVER would ride the engine into the city where I work on a mutual aid call. The members of my volunteer company understand that and respect it. But then we don't have that idiotic paid/vollie rivalry here in my area and the suburban volunteer companies tend to get along well with the career dept. in the city. There are a few butt heads here and there on both sides but that is minimized. I suppose it really all comes down to common sense and maturity. PG used to be a respected dept. but now it is looked at as somewhat of a big joke. Fist fighting in stations and at fires, sabotage of personal equipment and vehicles etc. I have heard and read all the stories. Sad, really sad. It's a shame and a disgrace to the service. Oh, as for that retread who suggested that PG get the Teamsters in to replace the IAFF. Just try the volunteer thing with a Teamster union. Just once. What a clueless fool.
    Last edited by Deputynick; 02-10-2002 at 07:59 PM.

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    Got to ask this. It seems to be implied that these off duty FF's are replacing career FF's like if 1 calls in sick. Thus saving the OT. But if I am a vol. w/ say E2, but work at E10 on the other side of the county, do I respond from say home for calls on my day off or are we talking about pulling vol. duty where I have to be at the station during a designated time period? Trying to understand the way things work has been different. Being from another state means a whole different set of rules. Its like the EMT and Paramedic thing. In my state I can do all this but in your state I can change the bandaid and take a pulse. I guess I'm like John Q Public, but I live 500 miles away.

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    thanks 1664!

    CollegeBuff all families feud.

    In PG volunteers do NOT reduce overtime. They do NOT fill in when a career person calls out. If a career slot is empty a career person fills it. The problem is these people coming into the house and causing grief. Telling another brother they can't come into the dayroom, can only stay in a certain part of a house, butting heads on calls because L36 does it this way or PG does it that way. It's all juvenile.

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    Originally posted by D Kelly
    Gee, let's see if we can figure out why these attitudes **** off union brothers. Let's say, just for fun, that we come set up shop right next to your place of business, be it plumbing, carpentry or lawyering, the place you make a living doing what you do, and start giving out the services you provide, only for free, because we need more of those services provided, and free is way better than paying for it. Soon people would flood our "free" service and you'd be down the road, and the hell with you, because the service you provided was valuable and the people couldn't live without it, and we're only better serving the peoples needs, because it's free now. Think you'd be ****ed off in short order? The union's main purpose is to protect it's members jobs, plain and simple. If you don't want to follow the rules, just say "no" and turn in your card.
    I'm not a career fire fighter, I am a volunteer and truly proud of it. For the most part I do have a good relationship with the career fire fighters at my station.

    I began asking them if they knew of resolution 43 some did some did not. Does the union help them? Yes and no. I don't know all the politics of Local 1619 but I think sometimes the executive board is sometimes out of touch with the rank and file. If Local 1619 would like to have more career personnel there are more ways to obtain their goal then using resolution 43 against the volunteers. In the end all parties, both career and volunteer are losers with resolution 43.

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