Tanker trumps the Zamboni
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
are editors (like me) accused of having a sense of humour but this headline
from the Belleville Online Pioneer Plus caught my eye in a news search
Belleville is getting a new fire truck . . . and the Zamboni will just have to
read the story here and learn how the forthcoming harmonized sales tax affected
council’s decision to buy the tanker now but hold off on the Zamboni.
Did you catch CBC’s Marketplace Friday night? If not you can
see the episode on sprinklers – or, rather, the lack of sprinklers – in seniors
homes here. Scroll down to the comments from viewers – makes for interesting reading.
Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs president
Richard Boyes said all the right things, telling Marketplace host Erica Johnson that there’s
no doubt there will be more fires in seniors homes and more people will die.
Johnson surprised Minister of Community Safety and Correctional
Services Rick Bartolucci outside his Toronto office and asked him why the Liberal government
has declined to require all nursing homes to have sprinklers.
has generally been a friend of the fire service, spouted some gobbledygook
about listening to what the fire marshal says and enacting legislation
accordingly but didn’t answer Johnson's question and was then sprinted off by his handlers.
said last week, the OAFC played nice for a while, courting and educating the
minister and hoping he would make sprinklers mandatory in all nursing homes. Now,
the gloves are off.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs – with some help from outspoken Niagara
Falls Assistant Fire Chief Jim Jessop – has been pushing for sprinklers in
retirement homes. The deaths of two seniors in a fire in Orillia, Ont. (and two more later, in hospital), in January 2009 bolstered
the cause but the Ontario government has failed to respond
A big story out of Lethbridge, Alta.
After considerable lobbying by residents (and, no doubt, the Alberta Fire
Chiefs Association and Lethbridge Fire Chief Brian Cornforth), the province has
frozen plans to centralize ambulance dispatch operations to Calgary and Edmonton. In
firefighters will continue to provide paramedic service.
Movin' on up can present new challenges
March 17, 2010
I read with great interest this week that
Scott Marks, the president of Toronto's Local 3888, has accepted the position of assistant to the general president
(AGP) for Canadian operations of the IAFF. This represents a tremendous
career opportunity for Scott and validates the outstanding work he has done as
local president. In his letter to the membership announcing his pending
resignation, Scott mentioned that he will be “available to assist Local 3888 in
finalizing the current round of negotiations no matter what the circumstances.”
I'd like to focus on that as I believe that the history of labour/management
relations under his tenure will prove to be Scott's strongest legacy.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
benefit of blogging is that you get to read other people’s blogs in the name of
research and expanding your blogging horizons. Tim Beebe, who writes the Spontaneous
Combustion column for our Canadian
Firefighter quarterly magazine, is the fire chief in Upsala, Ont. Ever been
to Upsala? Me neither. By all accounts (or at least by all Tim’s accounts)
Upsala is a snowy place hours north of Thunder Bay with lonely stretches of
highway, plenty of moose and far-flung mutual aid partners who arrive hours
after the call. Fortunately for Tim, his wit, sense of humour and writing
talent keep him sane and help him through the sometimes bizarre incidents to
which he and his volunteers respond. You can read about Tim’s exploits on his
blog. Bookmark it!
March 15, 2010
fitting that Ottawa Fire Chief John deHooge focuses on residential sprinklers
in today’s interview with the Ottawa Citizen to mark his first 60 days on the
job. (You can read the story here.)
the Citizen reports, here’s what the fire service is up against:
March 12, 2010
new stories have surfaced in the last couple of days.
government announced yesterday – mere days after the Olympics ended – that it
is reorganizing the B.C. Ambulance Service. This is no surprise given that BCAS
had been on strike and was legislated back to work just weeks before the Games.
CUPE spokesman B.J. Chute called the reorganization “retribution by a
vindictive health minister” for the strike. Harsh words indeed. You can read
the story here .
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