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  • Compensation for volunteers

    Would anyone care to share their thoughts and ideas on compensation for volunteer departments. We are currently looking at starting some sort of program, to compensate our firefighter on a per run basis. Any ideas on types of programs, (monentary, gas cards, etc) and also on accountability. Keeping track of who was there and who was in route. Thanks

  • #2
    Originally posted by littlemansdad
    Would anyone care to share their thoughts and ideas on compensation for volunteer departments.
    Short answer? If you get compensated you loose the right to call yourself "volunteers." If you're okay with that there are any number of non-salary incentives that have been tried in various combinations. Just be sure to recognize up front that a "compensated volunteer" is a "Paid on Call" part-timer -- not a "volunteer."
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"
    sigpic
    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    • #3
      I'll give ya a little insight on what we do with our dept. Of course the money you pay out will depend on your budget.

      Each FF or EMT that responds to a call will get written down in the report at the station. Also, any personal whom does not make the engine, still gets credit. It's the same if you make the truck or not. At the end of the year (beginning of December) the department cuts each person a check. In our case, it is $5 per call and per training. Officers receive a bit more. If you would like more info on how we run it, feel free to PM me.

      ADDED------> We do have to pay taxes on what we receive. This is per dept lawyer. Maybe you will, maybe not, I dunno. And as stated in the post above, we are paid-on-call.

      Comment


      • #4
        100 bucks per run, plus 100 bucks for every hour on the call. So you take the call and you automatically make 100 dollars. If you stay there for 3 hours, then it's another 300 dollars on top of the base. The total would be 400 dollars. The system works.
        New York State EMT-B

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        • #5
          Deputy marshall we call it reimbursement. We get $10.00 per call to cover gas and wear and tear on personnel clothing etc. We do not get this for med calls, only fire and MVAs.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by littlemansdad
            Would anyone care to share their thoughts and ideas on compensation for volunteer departments. We are currently looking at starting some sort of program, to compensate our firefighter on a per run basis. Any ideas on types of programs, (monentary, gas cards, etc) and also on accountability. Keeping track of who was there and who was in route. Thanks

            If you want to be paid why not abolish the volunteers and begin a paid department? Why sell yourself and your labor short? Ask for full price.

            Why do volunteers need to be paid? I was a volunteer and besides a Helmet, boots and coat I never recieved a single thing from them.

            FTM-PTB

            Comment


            • #7
              We're Volunteers. You want compensated, go career.

              As far as accountability my department is in the beginning stages of applying the ABBETT RIT concept. Its a great system and I believe you'll be able to find a website.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by BruenRescue2003
                100 bucks per run, plus 100 bucks for every hour on the call. So you take the call and you automatically make 100 dollars. If you stay there for 3 hours, then it's another 300 dollars on top of the base. The total would be 400 dollars. The system works.
                You are f****** kidding, right? Somebody please tell me this guy is kidding....
                Chief Dwayne LeBlanc
                Paincourtville Volunteer Fire Department
                Paincourtville, LA

                "I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream — and I hope you don't find this too crazy — is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
                — C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

                Comment


                • #9
                  My POC FD pays as follows:

                  $12 per incident
                  $8 per training
                  $8 per equipment, vehicle or staion maintenance detail
                  $3 per meeting
                  $2 per activity...this is a general activity that includes things like PR events or Pub Ed

                  We have taxes taken out of our check and we are paid once a year the first week in December. We used to call our pay reimbursement too...then the accountants got a hold of it...I would do some research and make sure what ever you do is legal and above board with the IRS. Better to be clean from the start than to try and make up for it later.

                  As for eliminating the POC and replacing them with all paid personnel...not with our budget. Right now we have 18 members and with our runs and other activity level our pay come to around $7500 per year. There are very few true volunteer fire departments in this area anymore.

                  FyredUp
                  Crazy, but that's how it goes
                  Millions of people living as foes
                  Maybe it's not too late
                  To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Ask yourself why are you thinking about going to a POC system.
                    1) Is it because like many vollie departments, you are having a hard time attracting compitent people to the ranks? And you hope a little cash incentive will help?
                    2) Is you call volume increasing to the point the crews deserve a stipend?
                    3) Is it a temporary stop gap preventing the enevitable-you just can't get the job done with the people you have?
                    If it's 1 or 3, you may want to think about paid staffing, if not 24 hours, at least during the day when vollies are scarce. No amount of money can bring the non-existant.
                    If it's number 2, and an honest review shows you are able to get adequate crews for your runs at all times, then maybe a POC system is going to work.
                    Many POC departments here do it 2 ways:
                    1) $ amount per call, no matter duration or time. Small uniform allowance for station gear. Good for a limited budget, history will give you the parameters to budget from year to year. But you will be selling yourself short-it's the same for 15 minutes or 15 hours. You run a decent volume, moral will tank.
                    2) Hourly rate, most with a 2 hour minimum, also with a uniform allowance. With a decent hourly rate you will be somewhat fairly compensated for your time. Real advatage here- you start running alot of runs, and maintain decent staffing, the costs start going up and so does your budget. As you grow, it soon becomes evident to the city it would be financially prudent to hire full-time. Disadvantage- can be tough to budget for, the call lenght is a variable that may be beyond your control.
                    As far is who is in route, use the radio: engine 1 enroute with 3 or 4 or 10.
                    Keeping track of who was there, you have officers' that you are trusting your crews with. Hopefully they can take roll.
                    Here are some options, good luck. Like fred says, don't sell yourself short.
                    My posts reflect my views and opinions, not the organization I work for or my IAFF local. Some of which they may not agree. I.A.C.O.J. member
                    "I ask, Sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them."
                    George Mason
                    Co-author of the Second Amendment
                    during Virginia's Convention to Ratify the Constitution, 1788
                    Elevator Rescue Information

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I don't understand the bragging rights you guys are using for not getting paid...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        There are three current threads about this subject you'll probably find interesting.

                        Any un-paid volunteers here?

                        Any paid volunteers here?

                        Introduction of Paid FF's...Help?!?!
                        September 11th - Never Forget

                        I respect firefighters and emergency workers worldwide. Thank you for what you do.

                        Sheri
                        IACOJ CRUSTY CONVENTION CHAIR
                        Honorary Flatlander

                        RAY WAS HERE FIRST

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If you want to be paid why not abolish the volunteers and begin a paid department? Why sell yourself and your labor short? Ask for full price.

                          Why do volunteers need to be paid? I was a volunteer and besides a Helmet, boots and coat I never recieved a single thing from them.
                          We're Volunteers. You want compensated, go career.
                          Look believe what you want but frankly both of you are way out of touch of the situation in many parts of the country. It is harder and harder to get "pure" volunteers in many places so the POC type department evolves to compensate people. Run totals and economics in those same FD's do not justify full time 24 hour a day staffing so the POC staffing is the most feasible way to staff the FD without financially breaking the community. Don't believe that? Then riddle me this...my POC FD has a total budget of $40K, how many full timers can we hire? And don't give me the tired you don't have POC cops do you? No we don't, but we do have part-timers and their budget is just over half of what the FD's is. Economics is the reason you have POC's and not full timers. Sorry if that isn't what you consider a valid reason but it is reality.

                          As for the guy who said this:
                          100 bucks per run, plus 100 bucks for every hour on the call. So you take the call and you automatically make 100 dollars. If you stay there for 3 hours, then it's another 300 dollars on top of the base. The total would be 400 dollars. The system works
                          Let me know where this FD is located....because that is about 5 times what I make an hour as a career firefighter and you can sign me up!! Although I think he was being a wise *** and not serious at all because if you can pay $400 bucks for a simple house fire you CAN afford full time staff.

                          FyredUp
                          Crazy, but that's how it goes
                          Millions of people living as foes
                          Maybe it's not too late
                          To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by littlemansdad
                            Would anyone care to share their thoughts and ideas on compensation for volunteer departments. We are currently looking at starting some sort of program, to compensate our firefighter on a per run basis. Any ideas on types of programs, (monentary, gas cards, etc) and also on accountability. Keeping track of who was there and who was in route. Thanks
                            I would like to thank everyone who has responded to this. We are a true volunteer dept. The idea of a paid crew has been tossed around, and may come about. But for right now, we are looking to address the issue of participation. We have around 40 active members, of which, about 15 actively participate. It was brought up by our BOD, and they we're asking for input. Again thanks, your responses have been helpful.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by FyredUp
                              Let me know where this FD is located....because that is about 5 times what I make an hour as a career firefighter and you can sign me up!! Although I think he was being a wise *** and not serious at all because if you can pay $400 bucks for a simple house fire you CAN afford full time staff.

                              FyredUp
                              Yeah, just like the all-volunteer department on Long Island with the 7 million dollar fire station....Just as in some departments economics dictate a pure volunteer model, likewise in some departments simple economics would indicate that it's time to go paid....
                              Chief Dwayne LeBlanc
                              Paincourtville Volunteer Fire Department
                              Paincourtville, LA

                              "I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream — and I hope you don't find this too crazy — is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
                              — C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

                              Comment

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