(Providence-AP) -- A Superior Court judge has granted Providence
Mayor David Cicilline a restraining order to make city firefighters
to go back to work.
A spokeswoman for the mayor says 63 firefighters called in sick
today and 32 firefighters called in sick on Tuesday, coating the
city thousands of dollars in overtime pay.
Providence Firefighters Union President David Peters says that
the union leadership didn't encourage any firefighters to call in
sick. He says many who didn't show up used personal days, not sick
days, at their own discretion.
It is not known what prompted what Cicilline calls a "work
stoppage and slowdown."
The firefighters have been without a contract since June 2001.
Cicilline has been seeking concessions from their union on health
care costs.
The mayor said their actions put others at risk. But the city
was able to maintain minimum mandatory staffing levels. But Peters
disagrees.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)