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  • Federal Law?

    Does anyone have any information on a federal law the does not allow active duty military to volunteer as fire fighters?

  • #2
    Can't imagine there would be. Though most of my dealings are with reservists. Even if there is no law against it, it could easily be prohibited by the order of a superior. It's the military, suck it up.
    Fir Na Tine
    Fir Na Au Saol

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    • #3
      While they are not under the DHS, we have always had a few active duty Coast Guard personnel in our call division. One was even the second in command of the base.

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      • #4
        When I was active duty at Ft. Hood, there were a few guys that vollied in Killeen. They are a combi department, and from what I remember there was a waiting list to get on. This was back in '98-'99 though.
        A Fire Chief has ONLY 1 JOB and that's to take care of his fireman. EVERYTHING else falls under this.

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        • #5
          There is no federal law that prohibits this. The Army even has an Outstanding Volunteer Service medal that it has awarded to some guys who balanced their responsibilities in the Army with their desire to serve their community in a volunteer capacity. However, as with all things in the Army, it would be wise to have your commander's permission. If you live in the barracks, it will make responding very difficult and you would probably need to send a request up the chain of command to get permission to attend evening training. If you live off post, it's easier.

          Realize that the military is the public service that you are getting paid for ... so, therefore, has to be your first priority. Don't let anything effect your performance in the military. Otherwise, you won't have much of a leg to stand on when your chain of command denies you the opportunity to volunteer. However, I know a lot of guys that were able to balance the two. The hardest part will be getting through the initial training requirments in between deployments. But, I did it. And, believe me, the fire station is a lot better place to spend a Saturday evening than the Greyhound Bar and Grill (or wherever). Get the permission that you need, do what you can, and make sure that you continue to excel in the military. Don't give anyone a reason to look at your volunteer service as anything but honorable.

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          • #6
            In the AF, we can get second jobs, go to school, whatever, after you finish your CDC's. That is, if your supervisor approves it.
            -Bozz

            Air Force Medic

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            • #7
              Check with your base legal office. I know of no law that would prohibit you from volunteering. As had been said, your military duty comes first.

              You should probably have permisson in writing to protect yourself in case of injury. If you do not have authorization and get injured the military could deny covering your treatment and could count any time off because of the injury as lost time.

              I have been retired from the military for over twenty years but I do not think the have been any changes in the legal status. Most commanders encourage involvement in the local community and do not have a problem with volunteering. Just make sure you are in compliance with your service's directives,

              Stay Safe
              IACOJ

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              • #8
                I have never heard of such a law. I used to volunteer for a Fire Dept that served near the Headquarters for the Big Red 1 (1st I.D.) that had a few guys volunteer during their time at Ft.Riley.... I don't think they ever had a problem.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for the info. One of my members is being told by his department that he is unable to "ride" with them. I told him to have his chief call me which he did and he told me about this federal law. I asked him to send me a copy of it. I will call base legal monday am. This was brought up to me yesterday. Figured that this post would get me some quick general answers.

                  I'm vollie in NJ, with the permisson of my command. as always the service comes first. Hasn't been problem yet.

                  thanks for the help guys... and if I do find some info I will let you know...

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by rescuewkr
                    Thanks for the info. One of my members is being told by his department that he is unable to "ride" with them. I told him to have his chief call me which he did and he told me about this federal law. I asked him to send me a copy of it. I will call base legal monday am. This was brought up to me yesterday. Figured that this post would get me some quick general answers.

                    I'm vollie in NJ, with the permisson of my command. as always the service comes first. Hasn't been problem yet.

                    thanks for the help guys... and if I do find some info I will let you know...
                    Is he a firefighter for them?
                    Fir Na Tine
                    Fir Na Au Saol

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                    • #11
                      Yes. He was an active FF before he joined the Coast Guard.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by rescuewkr
                        Yes. He was an active FF before he joined the Coast Guard.
                        I'm sorry, I'm a bit confused. Is he currently an active duty firefighter for the Coast Guard? Your wording in your second to last post (the one I quoted earlier) uses a more fire departmentesk way of speaking that a militaryesk way of speaking. I'm not sure if this is because you are in the fire department and not the military, or if I'm just getting even more confused.

                        Anyway, regardless there is no law that prevents a soldier from voluntering. There is definately the order of his commander which is effectivly law for all real concerns.

                        Sorry, but I'm getting mildly confused. Also rereading that second to last post of yours it almost sounds like he's wanting to be a volunteer firefighter for the base, but that his MOS (or whatever the Coast Guard calls it) is not firefighting. If that is the case, then I'm sure there probably is laws preventing it. You're not allowed to volunteer to do someone else's job in the military, why would they let you volunteer to be a firefighter when they have their own (or contract out to civillians).
                        Fir Na Tine
                        Fir Na Au Saol

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                        • #13
                          There is an active duty Navy corpsman in my department. The Navy is sending him to medical school and he is volunteering while doing his schooling. I know the circumstances are a little different as he isnt on base or going through daily Navy training, but from my conversations with him and other guys I know in similar situations, I dont believe any law exists.

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                          • #14
                            Like everybody else I've never heard of anything. You might be thinking of posse commitatus

                            http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/script...le=18&sec=1385
                            http://www.homelandsecurity.org/jour...Trebilcock.htm
                            http://www.dojgov.net/posse_comitatus_act.htm

                            It doesn't apply to firefighting, doesn't even apply to reserve law enforcement when "off duty."

                            The Army loves people doing positive things in the community as long as it doesn't interfere with their duties.
                            Heck. my chief spent a lot of years in a special mision unit and was a volly the whole time.
                            I am a highly trained professional and can find my :: expletive deleted:: with either hand in various light conditions.

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