First and foremost, I would like to thank the many residents who attended the Feb 7 village board meeting and voiced their opinion in opposition of the proposed layoffs.
Unfortunately the vote was carried 6 to 2 and now six career firefighters are to be laid off and one career lieutenant is to be demoted. We will not stop in our endeavor to prevent these layoffs. These layoffs not only affect the six firefighters who are to be laid off, they affect the safety of every resident and business in this village, including ALL firefighters, both career and volunteer.
We would also like to take this opportunity to clear the air regarding some information that is currently circulating regarding our current contract negotiations. As stated before, we have been without a contract since June 1, 2009. We have never walked away from the bargaining table. We feel that throughout negotiations, mediation and arbitration, we have made a good faith effort to settle a contract.
This is the first time that we have ever had to proceed to arbitration, which is a costly process for both sides and should be used only as a last resort, and not as an alternative. We are still working with the village negotiating team to come to an agreeable settlement. We have offered numerous concessions, including contributions into healthcare benefits, limited retroactive back pay and reduced raises for several of the years affected.
We are aware that no municipality is immune to the financial crisis that plagues our nation and we too feel the economic restraints, same as everyone else. All we are seeking is a fair and equitable contract.
Normally, as firefighters, people ask for our help, but we are now asking for your help. We consider this far from over and we need your support to help prevent these layoffs. We need you, the resident, to speak out!
Contact the Board of Trustees to ensure that they know layoffs and service reductions in the fire department are unacceptable. Mayor Brudie stated it was very early in the budget process, and Mr. Cavanaugh stated that with his involvement in the finance committee he did not perceive layoffs as being necessary at this time.
The safety of you and your loved ones should not have a price tag on it.
- Board Approves Firefighter Layoffs
- Emotions Run High as Firefighter Layoffs Go Forward
- Fire Lieutenant: Every Aspect of our Employment Under Severe Scrutiny
- Speak Out: Professional FireFighters Layoff
- Career Firefighters Break Their Silence
- Firefighters 'Compelled' to Address Trustee's Comments
- Report Recommends Leaving Firehouses Unmanned at Night
- GCFD Dispatching Duties Turned Over to Firecom
- Board Eliminates Staffing at Satellite Fire Houses
- Chief Cavarra Speaks Out About ICMA Report, Fire Department Tensions
- Fire Lieutenant: ICMA Report Inaccurate