Toronto firefighters lose jobs after sexist tweets
Investigation finds 'a pattern of social media activity that clearly violates city policies'
Two Toronto firefighters have lost their jobs after posting sexist remarks on Twitter, according to Toronto fire Chief Jim Sales, and a third has also been let go due to his actions on social media, although the chief would not discuss the details of that case.
Firefighters Matt Bowman and Lawaun Edwards were suspended indefinitely earlier this summer after posting comments on Twitter. Those suspensions, the chief confirmed today, have turned into dismissals.
The chief would not comment on the circumstances that led to the third firefighter being dismissed.
Sales said an internal investigation has found "public comments and a pattern of social media activity [by the firefighters] that clearly violates city policies and is not in any way acceptable for city employees, and will not be condoned or tolerated by Toronto Fire Services."
Of the tweets from Bowman and Edwards, one read, "Reject a woman and she will never let it go. One of the many defects of their kind. Also weak arms."
Another read, "Would swat her in the back of the head been considered abuse or a way to reset the brain?"
Bowman has since deleted his Twitter account and Edwards has changed the status of his account to "private."
Toronto Professional Fire Fighters' Association is "outraged" at the firings, and will work to reinstate the dismissed firefighters.
"The Association does not believe that the city has investigated this matter properly or considered the facts that were raised during the course of the meetings between the parties," read a statement.
Sales launched an investigation after the tweets became public. "In the public domain it's important for all of us to demonstrate a positive image of the Toronto Fire Service," he said at the time.