Friday Update 7-23-21
Updated On: Aug 20, 2021

FRIDAY UPDATE ON CONDITIONS


Sisters and Brothers, 

IAFF 10th District Partnership Education Program 

This week, local 1104 attended the Annual IAFF 10th District Partnership Education Program (PEP) to train tougher, share ideas and network with labor attorneys, Union leaders, and staff from JAC and CPF.  The Executie Board took classes on communications, political action, negations, and leadership. 

Local 1014 Executive Board members and President GIllotte also took part in a Fire Fighter Shooting Incident Symposium with presenters addressing Sierra Incident, Borderline Shooting, Garlic Festival Shooting, and San Jose Shooting. We discussed lessons learned and the resources needed when handling such major incidents.  We are grateful to have worked once again with our Union Labor Leaders from California, Hawaii, Arizona and New Mexico as we continue to resource ourselves to handle all aspects of Union work.    
 

Personal Data Breach 

The investigation into what happened is ongoing. We have been meeting with the County and the Fire Department with forensic internet and social media analysis and auditors to know with certainty how this information was made public and what information was accessible.  We have hired legal counsel to analyze what impact this has on each and every member of Local 1014's personal information. 

This data breach will be costly for the Department. It is our number one priority to ensure that we have proper policies procedures for social media and protections in place to prevent something like this from ever happening again. What needs to be done to protect our members going forward, and any reparations for damages that may have occurred are all being discussed.  We will keep you posted on any and all information as we complete the investigation move forward.  

This is a very serious issue and many outside independent agencies are involved. The County Board of Supervisors (BOS) is also involved. It was unfortunate to see this matter end up on social media for outside eyes to have access to our information. We take this serious breach of personal and medical information for our members seriously.  We will keep you informed as we move this issue to completion. 


Negotiations Continue for Fringe Benefits 

Local 1014 along with our partners at the Coalition of County Unions (CCU) continued to meet with the County as talks on medical contributions, new holiday time, COVID funds came to a grinding halt last week.

Protecting what we have post-COVID has become paramount to all the Unions, and staying in contract is part of that protection.  We are all in a one-year salary contract extension, and we will be looking to align the fringe with that period of time, as we set to meld salary negotiations and fringe into the same evaluations and funding predictions.  We are not out of the woods with regard to Fire District Funding and taking time to get all the information from the County and the Auditor-Controller and Tax Collector is imperative.  

We open again on Monday with efforts to get the numbers to get a successor agreement signed.  Our medical premiums and issues affected by the fringe contract take effect January 2022, so we have a little time to get it right before we agree and get it to you for a vote.  More next week as it heats up for a finish. 

Follow Up to Fire Station 81 Shooting and the BOS Motion to Help Us Move the Department Forward in Leadership and Management of our Work Issues 

The 30-day mark for the first report due back to the BOS is coming up and we have a draft report generated from the Department.  We have had many small group meetings between the Union, the Department, and the BOS addressing each item in the motion individually, and we have had one Labor-Management large group meeting.  The work was and is time-consuming and difficult as we address issues and negotiate solutions.  While good progress in testing, promotions, and moving to expedite promotees appropriately have been taking shape, the longer-term issues that we have identified in this BOS motion will take time.  

While we continue to work at the table for change, we also want to be clear that the Department while moving in the right direction, and while the small upfront solutions have helped, we have a long way to go before we are on steady ground.  You will see more on the proposed solutions and paths of travel regarding staffing, leadership, and mental health issues in the firehouse as this moves to the BOS and back to us for action.  

Words alone will not be sufficient for our membership or this Union. We have been demanding that deadlines, funding, and true change through action are the only acceptable outcomes.  We are pleased with the recent leadership changes in the Executive Staff and executive duties especially concerning critical issues like staffing, promotional exams, entry-level exams, behavioral health, and return to work.  

We are excited to tackle the proposed solutions with new leadership engaged.  Congratulations to the Executive Staff members taking these projects and issues on, but also know that your days just got busier to get it done.  We are will asking the entire Executive Staff, the Fire Chief, and BOS representatives back to the Union Hall again for a second follow-up meeting.  

Continue to run your stations, drill together, ask about each other at line ups, cook and eat together. Set the priorities to take care of each other, new members, and work to help with staffing as the hiring and promotions continue at a rapid pace to catch up to our needs.  We are already starting to see things clear up better in the FF ranks, but the Engineers and Captains suffer because of our lack of promotional process and timeliness. We are on our way to testing annually and lists that have people on them as we get to the end and March April final push to promote for retirements.  

PLEASE CALL THE UNION IF THE DEPARTMENT OR LAW ENFORCEMENT REACHES OUT TO YOU TO INTERVIEW OR INVESTIGATE THE FIRE STATION 81 SHOOTING AND THE FIRE ALL COLLECTIVELY THE SIERRA INCIDENT.   We have been talking to the Department and law enforcement on their needs to close out their investigation and balancing the needs of our members with regard to Union and legal representation, peer support, and clinician resources.  Be aware we have had law enforcement or the Department PPS and ER teams simply show up or schedule meetings to facilitate.  You have no obligation to give that interview and certainly, you should not without the resources to make sure all is well and most importantly we have resources for you and your families.  Call the union hall if you are contacted for an interview.  We will help you.  


48/96 Trial Shift Schedule Change Proposal 

While there has been much rhetoric on social media and some even speculating where we are on this issue or claiming it is dead, let us be clear again the issue is not dead, but alive and in negotiations with the Fire Chief and the Department.  

We have looked at every aspect of the proposal and in short, there is no reason this cannot proceed. All the work has been done to move to the trial. The Department has had every opportunity to evaluate the issue and digest the fact that the majority of our membership and their families are crying for this trial and that control over work hours and home hours are a critical component of workplace satisfaction.  We have made a final request for partnership with the Fire Chief and the Department as we move this item to the BOS to begin implementation.  

We have set a target date to start of December 15th or thereabouts to start, added a Labor-Management Committee of 3 and 3 with Union President and Fire Chief non-voting, to handle data collection and analysis of the trial as we proceed and to address any start-up issues or needs including adequate staffing levels. We have proposed quarterly reports and a final report back November 2022 with a vote scheduled as well as the final evaluation takes place to determine whether we keep the schedule or not.  We had the Department suggest another committee or analysis period and evaluate other issues not related and we rejected that offer.  We are prepared to go to the Board of Supervisors to get it done.  We hope the Fire Chief hears the membership and our families and joins us as a partner as we look to boldly move in a powerful way to new times.  

We see our membership at over 70% now with this item as the number one item of change on the suggestions list.  Our continued push on the Department to hire needs to stay in full swing, no schedule change will fix that issue. We must have the numbers up before we migrate, but the schedule control for work-life balance is the issue and heard loud and clear by all, except the Fire Chief and the Executive Staff as we wait for their response back to our official demand letter.  

This is such an opportunity for the Department leadership to demonstrate their understanding and connection to the rank and file members and the impact on our families.  An opportunity to demonstrate not to talk about removing the disconnect between the membership and the executive side of the Department.  We seek not their permission but rather a partnership to bring this to fruition.  

Stay tuned news on this early next week with a game plan for the next steps with the Board of Supervisors.  This has been a grind and just like Comp Time which we now enjoy. We negotiate to get things done, and this has been no different. This is a hard road but we never give up. 

Stay safe and take care of each other. 
  

In Solidarity, 

President Dave Gillotte and the Local 1014 Executive Board 

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