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  • InAndUp
    replied
    While I can understand that this may impact some volunteer depts to a degree, the media has failed to detail why this an important topic.

    In the past, heart and hypertension was easily given if you were a FF. That is no longer the case. There now must be solid proof that the job has actually been the cause of the injury/illness. If a paid FF is also a volunteer on his days off, the claim will certainly be denied. The City of Hartford does not want to pay a claim for an incident that it has no part of. By being a volunteer on the site, the burden of proof has been removed.

    The same goes for workers compensation. Whether we are paid or volunteer firefighters, fire burns the same way. With that comes the possibility for injury. If a paid firefighter gets hurt in a volunteer capacity, he is now out of work. In one of the articles I read, a town manager stated that if a FF got hurt while being a volunteer, the town's workers compensation would cover him. The paper left it at that. But...will they pay his full FF salary that he makes in his paid job? Also, exactly how does he take the time off from his paid job? He would have to use either vacation time or sick time. Either one creates the need for overtime, and cities are out to cut that in massive ways since every city is belly up with budget woes.

    The biggest thing that comes to mind here is that the paid job is how we feed our families and keep a roof over their head. That's pretty much priority one in my life.

    It's also odd that the media is making such a big deal of this. Waterbury, West Hartford, East Hartford, and many other depts. in the area have all had the same stipulation for years. When these depts. hire volunteers, those members stop volunteering. No dept has gone under as a result.

    I'm not sure what Hartford's contract entails, but I would think that these depts. do not need to lose their knowledge in these Harford FF's. Although unable to respond to emergency calls, some depts. do let guys volunteer as training officers. The key is to not let them go to calls where an injury or stress could occur.

    I applaud Hartford for setting the date that this becomes mandatory forward a few years. This gives all depts. plenty of time to recruit and train new members.

    In a time where towns and cities are feeling a huge budget cruch, they're looking at every penny to see if it is being spent wisely. Sick and comp times are HUGE payouts in paid depts. Although there will be an uncomfortable transition for some depts., I know that every volunteer dept will surive and the fires will still go out safely.

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  • CollegeBuff
    replied
    Interesting way of accomplishing the same goals that the PGFD situation was started over.

    Leave a comment:


  • Adze39
    replied
    We're losing 2 Lieutenants.

    Simsbury is losing their Chief (unless he retires from Hartford before then) and others.

    Kaman Aerospace is losing some of its industrial firefighters.

    It is going to have a big impact on this area. Not only are many of those guys volunteers, many of them are officers in volunteer departments.

    The new contract goes into effect July 1st, and they are switching from 3-on/3-off to 24hrs-on/72hrs-off.

    Leave a comment:


  • NJFFSA16
    started a topic Hartford Contract

    Hartford Contract

    HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - A new contract for Hartford firefighters
    could be costly to other fire departments in the region.
    The contract would prohibit city firefighters from responding to
    calls as members of other paid or volunteer departments. The
    provision would take effect on June 30, 2008.
    Paul Fetherston, town manager of Newington, told The Herald of
    New Britain that the change would have a "devastating impact" on
    his town and volunteer departments in greater Hartford.
    "Every community has the right to govern and manage their town
    as is appropriate but not to the detriment of their neighbors,"
    Fetherston said. "To have people prohibited from volunteering who
    want to volunteer concerns and confuses me," he said.
    Fetherston said he believes the contract would remove 85
    volunteer firefighters from departments in the greater Hartford
    area.
    Hartford Fire Chief Charles A. Teale said the purpose of the
    clause is to decrease injuries suffered by Hartford firefighters
    while volunteering in other towns. He also said the provision would
    save taxpayers money because the city would not have to pay
    overtime to firefighters who cover shifts of employees injured in
    other towns.
    "I tried to look at it from everybody's perspective - the
    firefighters, cities and towns and the taxpayers," Teale said.
    "It was a very difficult decision to arrive at, but it's the only
    one that benefits the firefighters and taxpayers."
    Teale did not know how many of the city's firefighters would be
    barred from volunteer service under the new contract because
    department employees never needed his, or the city's, permission.
    Newington, which may lose two or three of the 125 members of its
    volunteer rolls because of Hartford's contract, has already seen
    similar regulations in East Hartford, West Hartford and New Britain
    affect its volunteer services.

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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