Windsor firefighters vow to fight changes to department
Members of the Windsor Professional Firefighters Association voiced their displeasure at council
Windsor's firefighting union on Monday night vowed to fight council's plan to transform the department.
Several members of the Windsor Professional Firefighters Association were at council to make their point.
The president of the association says his members are not pleased with the plan council has approved to mitigate the cost of an arbitrator's ruling.
Angelo Gertsakis outlined to council the reasons they can't support it.
Gertsakis says his association has other options to put forward.
But Mayor Eddie Francis says the firefighters have had more than enough time to present their case. He says council is proceeding with its plan.
"We've put a plan in place that improves coverage for additional 50,000 residents. We've put a plan forward that gets us down to zero, without passing the cost to the taxpayers," Francis said. "They're already negotiating the 2015 collective agreement and we'll deal with that when they come forward. Our parameters are well-known and well-established and that's what we're proceeding on."
The association is upset about the city converting district chief positions to assistant chief ranks and having drivers for district chiefs become regular firefighters.
Gertsakis says grievances will be filed over those changes.
"I'm disappointed. We were hoping to bring back another option in January ... to look at it because it takes a long time to get the resources to do what we have to do," Gertsakis said. "This isn't dead in our eyes. We're still going to try to do the best that we can do to come back and bring some other options."
Councillors says they're getting support from the public about the plan.