1. #1
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    Default 'Nepotism'-where do you stand?

    My dept. used to have a policy, that if you had a relation working for the city in any of its depts., you were forbidden to apply for a firefighter position. Not having any relatives myself employed by the city,this restriction definatetly improved my chances of being hired. Times have changed and we now have had a few father/son combinations working together on the job, and over all these off-spring have proven to be valuable members of our dept. My question;-Should relatives be given preference over equally qualified applicants,or should the bar be raised higher for them,so that favoritism is not an issue? Also,should sons or daughters be automatically hired if their father or mother should tragically die in the line of duty?

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    thats how NY does it, if your parent had died in 9/11. you are pretty much guaranteed a job.

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    Nepotism is okay as long as you keep it in the family.

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    Quote Originally Posted by manofire2 View Post
    Nepotism is okay as long as you keep it in the family.
    Isn't that something else or am I thinking of west virginia again?
    I am a highly trained professional and can find my :: expletive deleted:: with either hand in various light conditions.

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    I paraphrased. Glad to see others are as warped as me.

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    If one uses a unbiased, merit based civil service hiring procedure then it doesn't matter as the best man gets the job and nepotism wouldn't ever enter the equasion.

    FTM-PTB

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    Where do I stand? Right next to my brother.
    I am a complacent liability to the fire service

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    Quote Originally Posted by FFFRED View Post
    If one uses a unbiased, merit based civil service hiring procedure then it doesn't matter as the best man gets the job and nepotism wouldn't ever enter the equasion.

    FTM-PTB
    Great in theory but the fact is it doesn't exist.

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    Quote Originally Posted by manofire2 View Post
    Great in theory but the fact is it doesn't exist.
    It does here and has worked for 100 years.

    FTM-PTB

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    FFFred, don't children of LODD members get any "preference" points? I thought I had read that somewhere, but not sure.

    And while I agree with that, I also agree that the best person for the job should get it, regardless of who they are related too.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    FFFred is correct. If you have a fair and balanced entry exam and process the best man or woman gets the job. I have given oral interviews to alot of kids of firefighters on our job and let say that not all of them passed. You still have to answer the questions and do the job...to get the job.

    Respectfully,
    Jay Dudley, Retired Fire
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    I like the way the FDNY does it. I think POINTS are the way to go. I don't, however, agree with residency preference(bonus points) though. If someone from alaska can do better then someone where I live I think they should go to the academy first. My father was a police officer in a really bad city in New Jersey, and the Jersey towns/cities declare if they take from the city, county, or state, and this city only took from its limits. All the guys on the job hate it and try to get it changed because, well, if you pick from trash, youre gonna get trash. I dont like Veterans points(only because I cant get em ;-), but I definatly agree with them. I think it was FFFRED in another thread who explaind how the points give them that extra bump to get back into society, but you still have to score at a high enough rate that you're a good candidate, the 10 points just speed it up and things of the other sort(not a direct quote). I dont like how Mass and Jersey do it, where you simply just get moved to the top, I think thats a little too much help, just my opinion though. As for LODD, I most definatly agree with that, its not just the one man/women who made the ultimate sacrifice, its the entire family. Its the municipality's way of saying thank you and honoring the passed.

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    Who picks the questions? Who sets the parameters? The bottom line is, a system is fair and equitable if I get on, if I don't then it is nepotism, cronyism, sexism, affirmative action, etc.,etc.,etc. If you go by exam scores, how do you settle ties? Which scores higher physical or scolastic marks?

    I agree that hiring should be a nameless and faceless procedure, but you will never totally eliminate criticism and in the minds of those who don't get hired, unfairness.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    FFFred, don't children of LODD members get any "preference" points? I thought I had read that somewhere, but not sure.

    And while I agree with that, I also agree that the best person for the job should get it, regardless of who they are related too.
    I'm not sure what that has to do with Nepotism.

    FTM-PTB

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    Quote Originally Posted by manofire2 View Post
    Who picks the questions? Who sets the parameters? The bottom line is, a system is fair and equitable if I get on, if I don't then it is nepotism, cronyism, sexism, affirmative action, etc.,etc.,etc. If you go by exam scores, how do you settle ties? Which scores higher physical or scolastic marks?
    You can do like the dept I work for now, and break ties by the date, hour, and minute your application is turned in to the HR office. There's no practical way HR can stamp two apps at the same time. Then you can do like most cities and have a random lottery number drawing. I've read about tie breakers based on previous experience, certain level of certification/education, and residence.

    I agree with Mr Dudley and others who say the best person for the job gets the job. I've never heard of giving family of LODD preferential treatment. It sounds like a good idea. As someone who lost a parent at a young age, that's something a child carries whether they remember the parent or not. That goes for if the parent's FF, LOE, or military.

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    Quote Originally Posted by manofire2 View Post
    Who picks the questions?
    Proffesional test writers who study the job and take surveys from members of that rank. And then they also must follow Civil Service commssion rules and laws.
    Who sets the parameters?
    See above.
    The bottom line is, a system is fair and equitable if I get on, if I don't then it is nepotism, cronyism, sexism, affirmative action, etc.,etc.,etc.
    Really?
    If you go by exam scores, how do you settle ties?
    By rules estabished by Civil Service law using un-biased, essentially random numbers as in a certain number of everyones social security number and the last number of the year of the date of the exam....etc.

    Which scores higher physical or scolastic marks?
    Each gets a 50% 50% weight.

    I agree that hiring should be a nameless and faceless procedure, but you will never totally eliminate criticism and in the minds of those who don't get hired, unfairness.
    The goal isn't to elminate criticism, that isn't the duty of the civil service system. They are to produce a list for a job title based on who demonstrated in standardized exams the greater merit and fitness for said job...period. No system is perfect, however ours is by far contains the least bias and has shown to produce no more F*ck-ups than patrongage only we don't have to worry about that "who ya know" baggage.

    FTM-PTB

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    In FDNY you're not guaranteed a job if your father died in the line of duty for the city. You DO get 5 legacy points which if added to the 5 residency points is HUGE.

    I agree with the above post about city residency points. I don't believe in them. If a guy from out of state scores a 100% and a New Yorker scores a 96 he gets hired first because he gets 5 points. I do think that you should break ties with residency. If an out of stater and a New Yorker get the same score, the resident should get hiring preference.

    The time stamping is getting tricky with the current age of internet applications. What happens if a person applies on the internet at the same time a person hands his in in person? What about time delays if the server is down and so on.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FFFRED View Post
    I'm not sure what that has to do with Nepotism.

    FTM-PTB
    Nothing. It was just a question, as someone in an earlier post mentioned something along those lines.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Nothing. It was just a question, as someone in an earlier post mentioned something along those lines.

    OK yes, if your father should become a LODD you can use some points on an exam for a uniformed job title.

    FTM-PTB

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    If you can come up with test procedures which are totally objective, with no subjective marking and the applications were totally blind(where you score the application with no knowledge of the person), I might be more in agreement. The problem is that I have seen many of the tests. Most are totally subjective and open to interpretation. On one test for instance, one of the questions asked was what kind of vehicle do you prefer. How this has any bearing on who gets hired I have no idea. The theory is that in a random survey, existing Firefighters would be most likely to answer in a certain way so you get more points if you think that way.

    Hiring in this way is much like targetted selection promotion procedures. Great if your face fits the target.

    You say that you grade physical and scholastic marks 50-50. If I score 90 on my scholastic and 80 on my physical, you score 80 on your scholastic and 90 on your physical, who gets hired?

    Don't get me wrong, I favour merit based hiring, I am only saying there is not a perfect system out there. If there is I have yet to be shown it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by manofire2 View Post
    If you can come up with test procedures which are totally objective, with no subjective marking and the applications were totally blind(where you score the application with no knowledge of the person), I might be more in agreement.
    We have that. How else does our Dept of Personel (DCAS) grade 20,000+ exams?

    The problem is that I have seen many of the tests. Most are totally subjective and open to interpretation. On one test for instance, one of the questions asked was what kind of vehicle do you prefer. How this has any bearing on who gets hired I have no idea. The theory is that in a random survey, existing Firefighters would be most likely to answer in a certain way so you get more points if you think that way.
    What cities was this exam given in? I can tell you this exam you speak about isn't a civil service exam and has nothing to do with this conversation.

    Hiring in this way is much like targetted selection promotion procedures. Great if your face fits the target.
    Once again, that is not what a civil service exam is there to measure. The Civil service exam askes questions that a person with a high-school education could answer, problem solving, reading comprehension...etc.

    You say that you grade physical and scholastic marks 50-50. If I score 90 on my scholastic and 80 on my physical, you score 80 on your scholastic and 90 on your physical, who gets hired?
    You need to re-read what has alreadly been written above. There are legal and essentially unbiased tie breakers such as the 4th to last number of your Social Security number and such. It is all set forth in the law and has worked for decades.

    Don't get me wrong, I favour merit based hiring, I am only saying there is not a perfect system out there. If there is I have yet to be shown it.
    No system is perfect...however I don't think you really know what a civil service merit and fitness based exam is all about.

    The Civil service system while it has its pros and cons, eliminates the patronage and subjectivity of humans in the hiring and selection process.

    FTM-PTB

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    Duplicate Post.....oooops
    Last edited by FFFRED; 01-16-2007 at 06:17 PM.

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    Duplicate Post.....
    Last edited by FFFRED; 01-16-2007 at 06:17 PM. Reason: Duplicate

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    Go on the internet and you can get examples of sample test questions from civil service exams. Here is an example from the City of St. Paul, firefighter exam..

    You are attending a playoff game for your university basketball team, the Tigers. They are playing the Elks. As you go to get a hot-dog, you accidentally bump into an Elks fan. Even though you apologize, he turns to you and yells: "What's the matter with you, you idiot? You better look where you're going, you stupid Tiger fan. Where'd you get that stupid hat? All you stupid Tiger fans are wearing those stupid hats. Those hats are stupid and you're stupid!"

    You do not feel threatened by the man, but you think he is irritating. Of the following, which would you be most likely to say?

    Choose 3 answers.

    "You're the one who's acting stupid here."
    "Excuse me. I'm going back to my seat now."
    "Like I said, I'm sorry I bumped into you."
    "Move away from me please."
    "I'm just here to have fun at the game."
    "Security can kick you out of here for bothering people."
    "Why don't we just go back to our seats and enjoy the game."
    "Hey man, let's forget the insults."
    "No wonder everyone thinks Elks fans are a bunch of hot-heads."

    Here is another gem.

    A class is attending a science fair at which there are several new scientific inventions. As the children walk past the displays, one of the students, Joseph, talks to the other students about topics not related to the science fair. When he is not talking, he is watching all the people around him. Based on the information in this passage, what do you think about Joseph's behavior?

    He is balancing his need to socialize with the need to let other students enjoy the science fair.
    He is lacking self-control because he does not like the science fair.
    He seems to lack a natural curiosity and appreciation for learning about new things.
    He only feels understood if he is talking about himself.

    Now I know the people making up these tests have degrees up the ying yang and get paid a lot of money to come up with these, but please explain to me how these examples can possibly result in hiring the best person for the job.

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    Quote Originally Posted by manofire2 View Post
    Go on the internet and you can get examples of sample test questions from civil service exams. Here is an example from the City of St. Paul, firefighter exam..

    You are attending a playoff game for your university basketball team, the Tigers. They are playing the Elks. As you go to get a hot-dog, you accidentally bump into an Elks fan. Even though you apologize, he turns to you and yells: "What's the matter with you, you idiot? You better look where you're going, you stupid Tiger fan. Where'd you get that stupid hat? All you stupid Tiger fans are wearing those stupid hats. Those hats are stupid and you're stupid!"

    You do not feel threatened by the man, but you think he is irritating. Of the following, which would you be most likely to say?

    Choose 3 answers.

    "You're the one who's acting stupid here."
    "Excuse me. I'm going back to my seat now."
    "Like I said, I'm sorry I bumped into you."
    "Move away from me please."
    "I'm just here to have fun at the game."
    "Security can kick you out of here for bothering people."
    "Why don't we just go back to our seats and enjoy the game."
    "Hey man, let's forget the insults."
    "No wonder everyone thinks Elks fans are a bunch of hot-heads."

    Here is another gem.

    A class is attending a science fair at which there are several new scientific inventions. As the children walk past the displays, one of the students, Joseph, talks to the other students about topics not related to the science fair. When he is not talking, he is watching all the people around him. Based on the information in this passage, what do you think about Joseph's behavior?

    He is balancing his need to socialize with the need to let other students enjoy the science fair.
    He is lacking self-control because he does not like the science fair.
    He seems to lack a natural curiosity and appreciation for learning about new things.
    He only feels understood if he is talking about himself.

    Now I know the people making up these tests have degrees up the ying yang and get paid a lot of money to come up with these, but please explain to me how these examples can possibly result in hiring the best person for the job.
    Those are a prime example of an exam which doesn't conform to the civil service laws and would be challenged if they were even used. I'm sorry your experience has been so poor but that is not a text book civil service exam question...that is an exam written to produce a certain result or confuse those who would seek to challenge its validity.

    You are talking about a completely different animal. Just because a city offers an exam doesn't mean it falls under civil service law and seeks to find the most quailifed by merit and fitness. Those questions obviously come from an exam which is far from unbiased and unamibiguous.

    FTM-PTB

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