Friday Update 2-3-23
Updated On: Mar 09, 2023

Brothers and Sisters,

As we close out Firefighter Cancer Awareness Month with a fantastic month of studies and education, we have a renewed commitment to fight cancer in the fire service. We also continued with the training and education of the two newest Executive Board members and continued training and education for all on your Executive Board.  The work of the Union is complex and diverse and we tool up to meet the challenges ahead to protect and advance our profession. 

While we set agendas and priorities for 2023 internally and deal with local issues, we also prepare and train with our affiliates from throughout the Country in solidarity.

National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS) 

Jason Green, our new LACERA representative on the Board of Retirement and Board of Investments, represented the Local and LACERA along with pension board members from throughout the country in advocating and lobbying in DC to protect and advance our defined benefit pension systems and regulations.   We work hard to place our leaders on the pension board and in the mix to define the legislative priorities and also fend off attacks that are always on the horizon to our funds.  

Jason joined pension trustees from throughout the nation to walk the halls of the capitol to speak with Congressional and Senate leaders to gain support on our issues. The list of items we must address is lengthy and can be found here in the NCPERS lobbying issues book.  The IAFF and President Gillotte will continue to ensure our leaders have their place in NCPERS and therefore, a seat at the Federal Table protecting our pensions. 

LRIS - Labor Relations Information Systems​

Labor Relations Information Systems (LRIS) is a Labor training, education, and advocacy group founded by a fantastic Labor attorney Will Aitcheson.  Will has been a friend to Local 1014 and ALADS, our sheriff union partners, for many years and announced his retirement from LRIS. Congratulations to Will on his retirement, as he has earned it representing members throughout the country in his time.  Thank you Will.  

He will continue to help as an attorney for Local 1014, ALADS and the CCU on some items of specialty. LRIS will continue going forward with new leadership to help us network, train and educate on how to represent our members best and protect our contract interests.  Things like the Venture decisions, rights of representation through FBOR, and more are all subjects in the intense training we put our E-Board leaders through.  

This year's kick-off training at the LRIS Public Safety Union Leadership Conference covered many aspects of Collective Bargaining law and cases affecting our issues, Union political activity and communications, representing members in disciplinary cases, and constitution and by-laws case law. 
Click here to read the LRIS Retirement Message from Will Aitchison
IAFF - ALTS - Affiliate Leadership Training Seminar 

This week, your Union Board attended the IAFF 2023 Affiliate Leadership Training Summit (ALTS). Unions from around the country converged to work in a trade training and educational seminar with intense workshops and information sessions that prepare our union leaders to advocate on your behalf and on behalf of the issues facing our profession.  

Health and safety took front and center again with our renewed commitment to fight the scourge of cancer in the fire service. PFAS in our turnouts, is one of the hidden contributors to higher cancer rates in members throughout the fire service in the US and Canada.

Local 1014 member Dr. Derek Urwin, PhD., working out of UCLA, has led the way in helping the IAFF get the data and information we need to legislate and now legally go after the manufacturers to change how they make our turnouts and also to bring the damages to a financial end to support our members who already have or may have the impact from exposure.

We launched the pilot of BURNED and announced the hiring of a trifecta of the nation's best law firms who will work together to represent the IAFF and our members in this fight against the manufacturers as we move both legislatively and legally to hold them accountable and get the changes we need in place.  Critical to all of this is the science and the data needed in our arguments. Fire Captain Jamie Gabriel and Dr. Urwin continue to place LA County front and center in the participation and collection of such data. We are grateful for their efforts and commitment as we all work to complete this.  More as we move this forward in 2023, and thank you to all who are participating in the studies and data collection efforts.   

ALTS also had many great training sessions on financial security for new firefighters over their career, behavioral health ongoing efforts and support for programs affecting the mental health of our members, retirement security, retiree health care issues, members representation and contract issues.  The training and networking with other Unions in our solidarity for the fights is imperative and your Executive Board, new and returning, are staying at the front of the train as we launch 2023’s efforts. 

Thanks to 10th District Vice President Stephen Gilman and IAFF GP Ed Kelly, and GST Frank Lima for ensuring Local 1014 is always front and center and for bringing the best experts and education we can get together for us all to share and prepare for our work.  
Click here to learn more about BURNED
Click here to view the Message from Mark Ruffalo on BURNED


Local 1014 Executive Board continues the work to address staffing issues and workers' compensation issues with more meetings between labor and management to garner agreements on paths of travel to help with the problems.  

The staffing committee continues to work to address systemic vacancies due to injury and retirement.  Hiring continues with a planned Class 170 in the works and the need to expedite promotional exams and lists to promote to vacancies.  It is clear the Department is doing better at a schedule of hiring and promotions, but also the lag and delay from Big County and HR internally are still a stumbling block to a smooth system with timely execution.  

We will continue to work on the long-term plans to address vacancies, as this is the only true formula to reduce recalls and ensure the use of our benefit days.  Short-term solutions to help with staffing are continuing and announcements for some outside-the-box trials are near, including a plan to protect four-dayers from recall. Watch for the EA and Union announcement very soon on these helpful temporary trial policy changes.  

In addition, the work to address the scourge of workers' compensation injuries resulting in massive vacancies in all ranks and subsequent recalls and budget bleed continues.  On February 8th we meet with the Department and the County again to work to rescue the number of members off work.  The “RETURN 50 MEMBERS TO WORK” plan also launches with a tie-in to Executive Staff management, helping to case manage and hold accountable Sedgwick and Corvel and help RTW staff and our members navigate their treatment and return to work in the next 90 days.  

We have had significant improvement in managing cases for our members with a fantastic RTW section with our BC and Captains and their staff pushing Sedgwick and guiding our members in advocacy to move their treatment along in a timely and appropriate manner, but the case load with over 450 members off work per month is high. We need more action to hold Sedgwick and our providers accountable with proper approvals and adequate payment to ensure the best care is available and accessible to our members trying to return to work.  

We will put out a report to the members following the Feb 8 meeting. We are also due to report to the BOS our work which serves two purposes getting our members back to work in a timely manner, treated and repaired and also reducing vacancies associated with members off work and returning the $220 million per year cost back in our coffers to pay for our salary and benefits and tools and equipment and training.  It’s that simple.  

We look forward to the work ahead and while nothing will be easy and every task will be heavy to ensure the financial and literal future of our department, we can all start to see the future is bright, brighter than it’s ever been.  

And along those lines, we keep getting asked, “When are we getting a permanent Fire Chief?”  The answer to that question is, “After Local 1014 pushes the BOS to move to get it done.” We are crafting a proposal to move a testing process forward that seeks to measure and interview both inside and outside candidates for Fire Chief of the LA County Fire Department and allow input from the Labor Group and others to ensure the BOS can pick the best and most qualified candidate, but also the most passionate and committed candidate to lead our department into the future.  This position should not be handed over lightly or easily to anyone.  We deserve the best on all fronts and nothing less, and we begin to move the BOS to embrace a process to measure that and select our next Fire Chief.  We’ll keep you posted as this progresses, and it should move along now that we have the BOS seated and in place following the elections.  

Be safe as you do the work serving the people we protect, be kind to each other, mentor and train the new members, and be professional and expert as we always are leading the way in the nation and in this state for our profession.  

In Solidarity, 

President Dave Gillotte and the Local 1014 Executive Board 

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