Illinois Firefighter Ineligible For Non-Duty Disability Pension

The Illinois Court of Appeals has concluded that a firefighter was ineligible for a non-duty related disability pension despite putting in the required years of service, because he began working for a different department. Michael Wessell filed suit against the Wilmette Firefighters' Pension Fund after the Fund’s board declined his request for a non-duty disability pension.

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Fire Law Roundup for February 12, 2024

In this episode of Fire Law Roundup for February 12, 2024, Brad and Curt discuss a lawsuit brought by the mother of a Maui firefighter who died after being caught in a storm drain last year; a trial court decision ...

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Maui Firefighter’s Mother Sues Captain Over LODD

The mother of a Maui firefighter who died after being caught in a storm drain last year, has filed suit against his company officer claiming his decision-making led to her son’s death. Chelsie Evans filed suit in Maui County Circuit Court naming Fire Captain Scott Martin, and 10 unnamed defendants.

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Judge Refuses to Dismiss Claims of Former Cincinnati Chief

A federal court judge has ruled that former Cincinnati Fire Chief Michael Washington can only be removed for cause, and refused to dismiss his suit against the city of Cincinnati for what he alleges is a violation of his due process rights. Chief Washington was fired last year by City Manager Sheryl Long and Mayor Aftab Pureval.

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Florida Fire Marshal Alleges Gender Discrimination

The former fire marshal for the Bonita Springs Fire Control and Rescue District has filed a gender discrimination and retaliation suit. Janet Washburn filed suit in US District Court for the Middle District of Florida alleging violations of Title VII and the Florida Civil Rights Act.

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Suit Alleges Discrimination Based on Position Designation

The Phoenix Fire Department is facing a lawsuit by a civilian employee who claims she was misclassified into a lower-paid position and denied a promotion, on account of her race. Melissa Green filed suit claiming she performed duties that qualified her for a “User Tech” position, but was paid as an “Administrative Aide.”

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Second Circuit Upholds FDNY Vaccine Mandate From Due Process Claims

The Second Circuit has upheld the suspension without pay, and in some cases the dismissal, of some 86 FDNY firefighters who refused to comply with the city’s vaccine mandate in 2021. The firefighters alleged that the city’s failure to bargain over the vaccine mandate, coupled with the failure to comply with the city’s normal disciplinary requirements, constituted a violation of their due process rights.

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Vermont Fire Department Sued Over Ketamine Injection

The mother of a 14-year-old boy with developmental disabilities has filed suit against the City of Burlington, Vermont accusing police and firefighters of racial bias, excessive force, and unnecessarily injecting her son with ketamine in an effort to subdue him in 2021. Cathy Austrian filed suit in Chittenden County Superior Court accusing the city of several state law violations.

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Fire Law Roundup for February 5, 2024

In this episode of Fire Law Roundup for February 5, 2024, Brad and Curt discuss the settlement of two gender discrimination lawsuit by the Lincoln Fire Department in Nebraska; an appellate decision dismissing the claims of a kayaker injured during ...

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Oregon Firefighter Alleges Race Discrimination and Retaliation

A Portland firefighter has filed suit seeking $1.2 million in damages for the race discrimination and retaliation he endured. Jason Wilson filed suit Multnomah County Circuit Court claiming he was denied promotions, given unequal training opportunities, and harassed on account of his race; and retaliated against after he complained.

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FDNY Prevails in Suit Brought by Injured Kayaker

The Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court has upheld the dismissal of a lawsuit brought by a kayaker who was serious injured during an FDNY marine rescue. Frank Marino Jr., 17, was kayaking in Jamaica Bay on May 30, 2014 when he capsized prompting an FDNY response.

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Judge Abruptly Dismisses Suit Against FDNY

A lawsuit filed by a former FDNY electrician accusing the city of discrimination and retaliation has been dismissed, accompanied by a blistering decision by the trial judge. Edward Pitre filed the action in 2018 alleging race discrimination, retaliation, and a violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act.

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Fired Colorado Fire Officer Claims Disability Discrimination

A Colorado fire lieutenant who was terminated for failing to comply with requirements associated with his return to duty following a DUI, has filed suit alleging disability discrimination and retaliation. Anthony Falbo filed suit in federal court naming the Poudre Fire Authority and the Poudre Valley Fire Protection District as defendants.

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