Boston Local Sues Over 7 EMT Related Resignations

Boston Firefighters, IAFF Local 718 filed suit against the city today following the forced resignation of seven probationary firefighters who failed to obtain then EMT license within their first year of service.

The local alleges the EMT requirement has been in place for over 15 years and has never been enforced. They are seeking an injunction to reinstate the seven firefighters.

Boston Fire Commissioner Roderick Fraser said in the aftermath of the EMS scandal the department sought to enhance the scrutiny of EMS training, and as part of that required 50 recruits hired in 2010 to agree in writing that they would be fired if they did not obtain EMT certification within one year.

The department provided EMT training for the members and has offered them additional tutoring as well to help them pass the state exam. According to Commissioner Fraser, by the members resigning rather than being terminated, they may reapply and be reinstated once they obtain their EMT. Had they been terminated, they would have had to re-enter the application process.

A hearing on the injunction request is scheduled in Suffolk County Superior Court on Wednesday, September, 28, 2011.

More on the story.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.

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