40 years old and wanting to become a firefighter?
I just dont understand how 40 year old men think its right for them to get the job enough for them to sue and delay others from getting the job.... Why havent they tested for any other Depts? They dont want to be on the job that bad I guess... just doesnt seem fair to give the job to a 40 year old, when you have tons of young people out there waiting to get a job.( when they have 20 years on they will be 60...) yikes... I also hear that another group of guys from the 1995 list sued the city to get hired, saying the test was too hard. I hear they won and got hired and recieved back pay from 1995.... i am noit sure how true it is, just something I have heard.... If its true....WHATS THIS WORLD COMMING TO!! I wouldnt want to work with these guys...
Chicago Firefighter Applicants Sue to Get up Ladder
By MICHAEL HIGGINS, Tribune reporter
Lawyers for the applicants, who passed an initial eligibility test in 1995 , are set to ask a Cook County judge on Friday to block the city from training further firefighters until their claims can be heard.
Brian Murphy, a carpenter who is one of the plaintiffs, said Thursday that after the city contacted him in early 2006, he moved from Oak Park to Chicago to meet residency requirements.
Murphy said he passed strength and background checks and was told to expect to start at the Fire Department Academy in November 2006.
But the date was pushed back and, in 2007, the city decided to hire from a newer list of applicants.
"You can't treat people like this," said Murphy, 40, whose grandfather, father and uncle were firefighters. "You can't string people along for over a year. ... All we're asking for is a little respect."
City and fire officials deny the lawsuit's allegations, saying applicants were contacted and tested but never guaranteed a spot in the academy.
"Everything we sent out in writing said: 'This is not an offer of employment. It is conditional,' " Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford said.
Jennifer Hoyle, spokeswoman for the city's Law Department agreed.
"We believe, based on what we've seen in the complaint, that these people were treated fairly," Hoyle said.
In 2006, city officials thought they might need to hire applicants from the 1995 list, Hoyle said. But she said rulings in a separate federal lawsuit changed that, allowing officials to choose applicants from a test given in 2006.
Langford said it made sense for the department to go forward with the applicants from the 1995 eligibility test until officials knew they could use the more recent exam.
That way, "your pipeline still has people coming out of it," Langford said.
In a lawsuit filed Tuesday, the applicants are seeking a court order that would give them slots in the academy. If that fails, they would seek unspecified money damages.
"Some guys passed up promotions at work because [they thought] they're going to be starting in the academy in two months," said Rob Robertson, attorney for the plaintiffs. Robertson said he had at least two clients who delayed trying to start a family, taking into consideration that they might be in the academy for six months.
The plaintiffs say a key issue is what fire officials said to applicants who attended meetings to fill out paperwork in 2006. The plaintiffs contend they were told that the academy would start later that year, and slots would be available.
John Clemens, 41, of Chicago, set up a Web site for the 1995 test-takers.City officials "never told us we were just back-up," said Clemens, an operations manager at Illinois Institute of Technology. "If you're going to have people who are just alternates or just insurance, it's important to let them know. "