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  1. #1
    Forum Member WFDjr1's Avatar
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    Unhappy Problem, any help would be greatly appreciated!

    It seems there is a major problem here. In my department, where I have pretty much grown up at, I have learned that when I turn 18, I can't be hired. A lot of the guys say I would be a great firefighter, but it has nothing to do with that. It's because our city has a law that states that immediate family cannot work together, even on separate shifts. I really don't want to go work for another station in our area, simply because I get along so good at our station. I could just be a volunteer, but then I would have to get another job that I probably wouldn't like until my dad retires about 7 years after I graduate, at that point I could go paid. Any ideas or help would be greatly appreciated!
    These are my opinions, not those of my career department, my volunteer company, or my affiliates. And by the way, I'm not a Junior.

    Buy me a drink, sing me a song, take me as I come 'cause I can't stay long.

    Johnny Greene: 2/3/45-5/2/04
    Forever in our hearts


  2. #2
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    Either get the law changed or live with it. There is no other option.

  3. #3
    Forum Member WFDjr1's Avatar
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    How can I get the law changed? I have no power to vote or propose in company meetings. I'm probably going to go talk to the Chief and see if he can help or not.
    These are my opinions, not those of my career department, my volunteer company, or my affiliates. And by the way, I'm not a Junior.

    Buy me a drink, sing me a song, take me as I come 'cause I can't stay long.

    Johnny Greene: 2/3/45-5/2/04
    Forever in our hearts

  4. #4
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    If this law is an ordinance adopted by the governing body of your city, you have the right to request to be placed on the agenda at one of their meetings. Get on the agenda, tell them what you see as a problem and suggest a solution. In this case, it would appear you do not like the nepotism ordinance. Suggest they change the ordinance to allow you to be employed in the same department as your father. I really don't think they will do it, but you can try. If the governing body will not change the ordinance your only other options are (1) Live with the ordinance or (2) change the people on the governing body. I really don't think this is a battle you can win. You would probably be better off trying to get on with another department. Sorry, but that is the way it is in the real world. Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

  5. #5
    Forum Member WFDjr1's Avatar
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    I think I'm going to get most of the station to back me if I go ahead and take it to the City Council. I've known a majority of the department since I was a wee little fella, and a lot of them think it's wrong as well. Oh well, if it doesn't work, I guess working at ACFD won't bother me too bad for about 7 years or so...
    These are my opinions, not those of my career department, my volunteer company, or my affiliates. And by the way, I'm not a Junior.

    Buy me a drink, sing me a song, take me as I come 'cause I can't stay long.

    Johnny Greene: 2/3/45-5/2/04
    Forever in our hearts

  6. #6
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    Find out why the ordinance is there to begin with. Maybe it's not so much a nepotism issue as it is a family hardship issue. Some Departments will not let family members work on same shift/station/Department etc on the possibility that should a large scale event occur with multiple deaths it will cause a severe hardship to one particular family. The World Trade Centre is a prime example where multiple members of some families were lost.

  7. #7
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    I can understand a town wanting to protect families from more then one member of it dieing at a scene but feel these kind of laws shouldn't be in place. I can see if the town wanted to keep family off the same shift but not the same department. Best thing to do is get the department behind you and put pressure on the town or whoever put it in place to remove the law.

  8. #8
    District Chief distchief60b's Avatar
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    From my experience it involves Nepotism...or the potential for it to occur. There is a concern over husbands supervising wives etc. I have two friend who work in Largo Fla. Both are Lieutenants and are assigned on opposite shifts. They both ride up as the District Chief but in their jurisdiction there is not a problem as long as they are on opposite shifts.

    I would venture to say that it is part of the City Operational Policy not an ordinance. It just keeps people from being supervised by someone they are related to directly....IE, husband/wife/son/daughter.

    Most places are not willing to change it so you will have to live with it. Get a job in another close by location and still volunteer in your home community.
    Last edited by captstanm1; 04-03-2002 at 11:45 PM.
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
    ------------------------------
    IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
    "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
    BMI Investigator
    ------------------------------
    The comments, opinions, and positions expressed here are mine. They are expressed respectfully, in the spirit of safety and progress. They do not reflect the opinions or positions of my employer or my department.

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber N2DFire's Avatar
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    O.K.
    Let's go with the idea that you are going to try and get the Law/Ordinance changed.

    Item 1 - Make sure you are 100% perfectly clear on the exact wording of the ordinance (Get a copy in print).

    Item 2 - Get someone from with-in the local government (Whomever the governing board get's their legal advice from) to "explain" the interpretation and/or spirit of the ordinance IN WRITING.

    Now you have some tools to work with. If the spirit of the ordinance was (as captstanm1 stated) merely to keep one family member from being supervised by another (which , to me, seems to be the most likely theory), then with the backing you have from your Department you have a reasonable case / chance to get the ordinance re-worded.

    If however it was intended as a family hardship issue (as LadyCapn theorized), then you may still have a shot at having the ordinance re-worded but I think you will have a much harder battle if this should be the case.

    Also - please note that I never once said anything about getting the ordinance removed or repealed. For some reason governing bodies just do not like to totally remove a law or statute or whathave you (no matter how stupid and/or outdated it may be). You have a much better chance in trying to get it ammended or re-worded.

    No matter what, I wish you the very best of luck. Speaking as someone who has butted heads with "local government" before, I truly know what kind of ordeal you may be in for.
    Last edited by N2DFire; 04-03-2002 at 10:23 AM.
    Take Care - Stay Safe - God Bless
    Stephen
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    Instructor

  10. #10
    Forum Member dfd3dfd3's Avatar
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    You could also get a signature petition supporting your case. Go around to all the people in your community if they care if you and your dad are on the same dept or not. Its easier for the board to tell a young kid no as opposed to telling 500 or 1,000 of their voters no.

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber gefd901's Avatar
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    I'm probably going to go talk to the Chief and see if he can help or not
    The NEW fire tetrahedron: Heat, Fuel, Oxygen, and The Chief; Remove any one of these and the fire goes out!
    Provided that you and your Chief have a good close relationship AND he has a good sense of humor, you will be OK asking him to help. Otherwise, you may want to consider changing your signature line before asking him to help.


  12. #12
    Junior Member Lonestarfireman's Avatar
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    There was some talk about nepatism laws when I wanted to work for the same department as my dad; which is a small one station department. After some looking we found that as long as he is not my direct suppervisor(sp?) I can work here. With him being a driver that means I can not work on the same shift as him ever. I have been working here for 2 yrs now and have not had a problem with this. Which is cool because I grew up in this station with all of these guys.

  13. #13
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    I think you got all the advice needed, I just wanted to say good luck
    Capt. Walker

  14. #14
    Old Fric
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    Nepotism hurts departments. Our department was knee deep in it. The fire service is not a monarchy, it is a job. I wish you luck getting on the job but I can understand why people dislike nepotism.

  15. #15
    Forum Member WFDjr1's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice guys! I think there's actually a chance that something can/will be done about this! If not, then ACFD isn't that bad of a department, I'm just not used to how they do things.
    And yes, gefd901, the chief has a great sense of humor! We were picking on him today at lunch at Pizza Hut, he's a great guy, with a great sense of humor. But, when we got back to the station, I guarantee we weren't there for more than 5 minutes when we got called back to Pizza Hut because a bush caught on fire. Now I've seen about everything!
    These are my opinions, not those of my career department, my volunteer company, or my affiliates. And by the way, I'm not a Junior.

    Buy me a drink, sing me a song, take me as I come 'cause I can't stay long.

    Johnny Greene: 2/3/45-5/2/04
    Forever in our hearts

  16. #16
    Forum Member MIKEYLIKESIT's Avatar
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    Having more then one family member on a fire department isnt nepotism unless that family member is supervising the other family member or your Dad is the chief etc. If this not the case then your towns rule stinks. I cant vouch for other departments but I think it is downright discrimatory not to allow more then one family member on a fire department.

  17. #17
    District Chief distchief60b's Avatar
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    Right on target mikey...it is a stupid rule and it is generally not an ordinance, rather it is found in the County/City Personnel Policy
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
    ------------------------------
    IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
    "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
    BMI Investigator
    ------------------------------
    The comments, opinions, and positions expressed here are mine. They are expressed respectfully, in the spirit of safety and progress. They do not reflect the opinions or positions of my employer or my department.

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