Thread: Mandatories!?!

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    Default Mandatories!?!

    I am a 9-1-1 Supervisor in new jersey and we are on a trial 12-hr schedule where we work 4 nights, have three days off, work 3 days, have 1 day off, work 3 nights, have 3 days off, work 4 days and then have 7 days off. During those 7 days off each dispatcher must sign up for 2 days that they will remain available in case someone calls out sick and another dispatcher picks up the overtime. In other words you are forced to come into work.

    I was just wondering how other communications centers handled "mandatories"?

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    You MAY have to get paid for mandatory on call time. There are several factors that determine if you must be paid for on-call status. Consult the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act and a lobor attorney. I remeber a case in the mid-west where fire fighters were required to be available during off duty hours. They were subject to disiplinary action if they did not respond. The town ended up paying big $ in back pay.

    This page has some useful information FLSA and on call time
    Last edited by KenNFD1219; 01-16-2006 at 09:48 AM.
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    for us mandatory means if someone calls off and no one answers the phone, the lowest person currently working is forced for 4 hours and the next lowest gets 4 too. Thats the worst case scenario, usually someone wants to work 4 hours.
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    We have been working 12 hour shifts for almost two years, and I love them. We don't have a mandatary call back period. The way our schedule is, you work three 12 hour shifts a week and a 4 hour shift. We don't switch back and forth from night to days, you sign up based on seniority for what shift you want. I would think going back and forth between days and nights all the time would be really hard on your body, and you would have a hard time adjusting, but thats just me. When we are fully staffed we work a three way trades for our 4 hour shifts. It works out where you only have to work the 4th day every three weeks, and its a full 12 hour shift. It works out really well, and everyone seems happy with it.

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    The dispatch center I work at works 3 12 hour shift with 3 days off. The only bad thing is every pay cycle you get overtime (not bad for me, but for the city). The way we work overtime is the first 3 days you are off your first day is mandatory overtime, the next 3 days off it is your 2nd day off that is the mandatory overtime, the next 3 days off it is your 3rd day off and the final 3 days off you don't have a mandatory overtime day. Then the cycle repeats.

    The way we work mandatory overtime is, first you must have 8 hours off before you can be called in, so if you get off at 7 am and the day person calls in you can't be forced to come in till 3 pm.

    The other thing is you are only responsible for your overtime day until 7am the day of your overtime. If no one calls in, you are relieved of your overtime to an extent. You are not required to answer the phone, but if you do, they can force you to come in. If you don't answer if they call you before 7am then you can be subject to disciplinary. After 7am then they can't do anything if you don't answer the phone.

    We normally have a day shift 7-7, two evening shifts 1 is 12-12 and the other is 3-3, then the graveyard shift 7-7. Normally one person calling off is no big deal because you either lose a evening person or shift one of the evening to graves or days. If you have 2 people call in, then you have to start calling people.

    Normally there are certain people who don't mind working overtime, so it is no problem to cover overtime by using people who want it.

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    I work in Loudoun County VA and we work 12 hour shifts: 2 days 0700-1900 / 2 nights 1900-0700 and off 4. We can sign up for OT and callback, but as of right now, neither are mandatory.

    We classify minimum staffing as no less than 4 people on a shift....if we fall below then the supervisor (or next in line) sends out 1 page, notifies the ECC manager, pages one more time, and then starts making phone calls. Per policy, call off's are to be made 4 hours before the start of shift.

    Now, if your scheduled to work and choose to cover another shift you can "flex" your time....example: 2 A.M. employee A calls out sick for A shift (07-1900), you answer your phone and tell them I work B shift (1900-0700) that same day....the supervisor will check the schedule, if your shift is fully staffed, they will suggest flexing. This means you work 0700-2400, and your pay or leave bank is not effected by these changes.

    When it comes to working over time....there are only a few people out of 4 Teams who take advantage of the opportunity, which creates burnout and illness. We are hoping to have each Team up to full staffing of 6 people this year. There are plans in the works to eventually hire calltakers and possibly expanding the ECC as a whole.

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