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Massachusetts Firefighters Alleged Overtime Violations

1 day ago
Two Brookline fire lieutenants have filed a class action lawsuit claiming the town failed to pay them overtime as required by the Fair Labor Standards Act. Lieutenants Brian Bergeron and Paul Trahon filed suit in US District Court for the District of Massachusetts on behalf of 150 similarly situated firefighters.
Curt Varone

Firehouse Locker Search in Rhode Island Leads to Federal Suit

1 day 23 hours ago
The Rhode Island affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union has filed suit on behalf of six Pawtucket firefighters accusing the city, the fire chief and a city police officer of violating their constitutional rights by conducting a locker search in September. Firefighters Noah LeBlanc, Stephen Garlick, Manuel Benevides, Scott McDonald, and Steven Como brought the action by and through the ACLU’s attorneys.
Curt Varone

Fire Law Roundup for December 4, 2023

3 days 7 hours ago
In this episode of Fire Law Roundup for December 4, 2023, Brad and Curt discuss a ruling by the Missouri Court of Appeals concluding that the state’s Board of Mediation acted arbitrarily in denying a union’s petition to organize fire captains under the contract bar rule; a federal court decision upholding the Atlantic City Fire ...
Curt Varone

Missouri Court of Appeals Overrules Labor Board

4 days 1 hour ago
The Missouri Court of Appeals has ruled that the state’s Board of Mediation erred when it refused to consider a petition by IAFF Local 2665 to establish a bargaining unit for captains in the City of Richmond Heights. The board and a lower court concluded that the “Contract Bar Rule” prohibited Local 2665 from seeking to organize the captains.
Curt Varone

Federal Court Upholds Atlantic City Fire’s No-Beard Rule

1 week ago
The US District Court for the District of New Jersey has upheld the Atlantic City Fire Department’s no-beard policy. The policy had been challenged by a city firefighter, Alexander Smith, on First Amendment, religious, and equal protection grounds. Smith also claims he had been retaliated against for requesting an accommodation.
Curt Varone

Oregon Volunteer Again Seeks $8.35 Million for Sexual Harassment

1 week 1 day ago
A former Oregon volunteer firefighter who filed and later dismissed a sexual harassment, whistleblower, and wrongful termination suit in 2021, has filed a virtually identical suit against the same parties. Amy Lenz filed suit against the Knappa Fire District and three district officials.
Curt Varone

Missouri Firefighter Claims Disability and Age Discrimination

1 week 2 days ago
A Missouri firefighter who was terminated after being on disability leave for two years, has filed suit claiming disability and age-discrimination. David Horning filed suit against the Central County Fire and Rescue District, its fire chief and the chairman of the district’s board of directors.
Curt Varone

Fire Law Roundup for November 27, 2023

1 week 3 days ago
In this episode of Fire Law Roundup for November 27, 2023, Brad and Curt discuss a jury award of $250,000 to a former Houston firefighter against her former captain who shared an intimate video of her; a Minnesota city held in contempt of court for trying to start its own fire department; a ruling by ...
Curt Varone

Jury Awards Former Houston Firefighter $250k Over Nude Video

1 week 4 days ago
A Harris County jury has awarded a former Houston firefighter $250,000 in damages against her former captain for unlawfully sharing a nude video of her. Melinda Abbt filed suit against Captain John Chris Barrientes and the city, alleging sexual harassment and violation of a Texas law titled “Unlawful Disclosure or Promotion of Intimate Visual Material.”
Curt Varone

Minnesota City Found in Contempt For Violating Injunction in FD Dispute

2 weeks ago
A Minnesota judge has found the City of Orono to be in contempt of court for violating her earlier order in a suit brought by the City of Long Lake over the breach of a fire protection agreement. The two cities, along with the City of Medina, are parties to an agreement whereby the Long Lake FD would provide services to the 3 communities.
Curt Varone

Fatal Detroit Fire Apparatus Crash Must Go to Trial

2 weeks 1 day ago
The Michigan Court of Appeals has ruled that a trial judge erred when he dismissed a wrongful death lawsuit brought against the City of Detroit by the husband of a woman who died in a crash with a responding DFD engine. India D. Sullivan died several months after the December 4, 2017 crash.
Curt Varone

Missouri Fire Department Sued for Sexual Harassment

2 weeks 1 day ago
A nurse who was hired by a Missouri fire department in April, 2022 has filed suit claiming that sexual harassment forced her to request a reduction to part-time status in September, 2022 and resign in December, 2022. Christeena Ferguson filed suit alleging 3 counts of sexual harassment and discrimination against the Southern Jackson County Fire Protection District.
Curt Varone

Nevada Settles Suit with Inmate Firefighters

2 weeks 2 days ago
The State of Nevada has agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by eight inmate firefighters who claim they were mistreated while serving with the Nevada Division of Forestry. The suit was brought by the ACLU of Nevada and alleged the firefighters were subjected to cruel and unusual punishment.
Curt Varone

Fire Law Roundup for November 20, 2023

2 weeks 4 days ago
In this episode of Fire Law Roundup for November 20, 2023, Brad and Curt discuss charges brought against an Indiana firefighter accused with impersonating a police officer; an Alabama firefighter who pled guilty to charges of stealing fentanyl from the fire department’s inventory;  a ruling in a complex wrongful death suit that questions whether a ...
Curt Varone

Indiana Firefighter Charged With Impersonating A Police Officer

2 weeks 5 days ago
An Indiana firefighter who claims he stopped to assist a motorist whose vehicle was damaged, has been charged with four felonies after he reportedly pointed a gun at the driver after being informed by dispatch the man was “wanted” and could be armed. Yorktown firefighter Derek J. Rains is charged of criminal confinement, criminal recklessness, pointing a firearm, and impersonation of a law enforcement officer.
Curt Varone
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15 minutes 32 seconds ago
Fire Service and Public Safety Legal Issues Blog by Curt Varone
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