Pennsylvania Junior Program Sexual Assault Case Settled

A lawsuit that alleged a 13-year old girl was sexually assaulted by a fire lieutenant while participating in the department’s junior program has been settled. The family of the victim, who was identified in the pleadings as T.S., filed the suit last year naming Lieutenant Joshua James Ralston and the Trucksville Volunteer Fire Department as defendants.

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Judge Dismisses Washington Fire Department’s FLSA Suit

A pre-emptive lawsuit filed by the Spokane Valley Fire Department in 2017 against IAFF Local 3701 over the issue of overtime for certain chief officers was dismissed today. The unprecedented lawsuit asked the court to determine whether or not battalion chiefs and fire marshals are exempt executives ineligible for overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

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Families of Two San Antonio Firefighters Sue

The families of two San Antonio firefighters, one of whom died the other who was seriously injured at a fire in 2017, have filed suit against Scott Technologies and the owner of a boxing gym where the fire occurred. Scott Deem was killed and Brad Phipps was seriously injured at a fire in the Spartan Boxing Gym on May 18, 2017.

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Newark Firefighter Loses Appeal of Termination

A Newark firefighter who was terminated in 2016 after falling asleep in a firehouse kitchen, missing a run, and testing positive for drugs and alcohol, has lost his appeal to the Appellate Division of the NJ Superior Court. Antonio Cruz had asked the court to overturn a decision by the NJ Civil Service Commission

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Fired Massachusetts Chief Sues Selectmen Alleging Termination Was Political

A Massachusetts fire chief who simultaneously served as a member of the town’s Board of Selectmen, is now suing the board and the other selectmen over his termination last February. Fire Chief Ernest J. Cardillo, Jr. filed suit last week in US District Court accusing the Town of Stockbridge and the selectmen with violating his civil rights under federal and state law.

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Jury Awards $3.8 Million to Tucson Firefighter Over Nursing Mothers Rights

A federal court jury in Arizona has awarded a Tucson firefighter $3.8 million in damages for the department’s failure to accommodate her needs as a nursing mother. Carrie Clark filed suit in 2014 alleging her fire station did not accommodate her need to express breast milk, and that she was retaliated against once her complaints became known.

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Burning Question on Retaliation and the FLSA

Today’s burning question: My fire department has been miscalculating our overtime pay, so we filed suit under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The fire department responded by requiring a doctor’s note for all sick leave of two consecutive days or more. Isn’t that retaliation? Answer: Retaliation is a question of fact, but if the fire department did alter your working conditions the department could be facing additional damages for retaliation.

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Virginia Firefighter Fired Following Trump Inauguration Protest Files Suit

A Henrico County, Virginia firefighter who was arrested for rioting at Presidents Trump’s inauguration in 2017, and was later terminated for lying to investigators, has filed suit in federal court claiming the department violated her 1st Amendment Rights. Rosa Dianne Roncales was fired on April 5, 2017 for “discrepancies” she gave to fire department investigators relative to her involvement in the rioting and vandalism that occurred in Washington, DC on January 20, 2017.

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NY Firefighter Struck By Motorist Prevails

A New York Supreme Court judge has found that a driver who struck a firefighter directing traffic at the scene of a vehicle accident, is liable to the firefighter and his wife for his injuries. Kyle J. Pierce, a volunteer firefighter with the Sherburne Fire Department, was directing traffic at an accident scene on November 15, 2016 when he was struck by a vehicle operated by Thomas O. Bigelow.

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Denver Lieutenant Charged In Hidden Cam Peeping Case

A fire lieutenant in Denver has resigned and is facing criminal charges following allegations that he placed a hidden camera in a female firefighter’s room, and then tried to destroy evidence once the camera was discovered. Daniel Flesner is facing felony charges related to his placing of a hidden camera in the dorm room of one of his subordinates

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Utah Firefighter Files $1.2 Million Suit Over Sexual Assaults

A former Utah firefighter has filed a $1.2 million suit in federal court alleging she was sexually harassed and raped by an assistant chief. Valerie Engstrom claims Assistant Fire Chief Austin James Corry of the Kanosh Volunteer Fire Department harassed her over an extended period of time, and then raped her on three separate occasions.

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Mass Judge Denies Stay of Civil Service Reinstatement Order

A Suffolk County Superior Court judge has refused the request of the City of Brookline, Massachusetts to stay a Massachusetts Civil Service Commission order to reinstate an African American firefighter who was terminated in 2016. The case involves firefighter Gerald Alston, whose legal problems have been chronicled here on three prior occasions.

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