Local News

Houston Firefighters Fighting for New Contract With Equal Pay

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The brotherhood that is the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association has been in the news lately as it fights for a better contract which provides equal pay and better benefits for its firefighters. Recently they launched a campaign to collect Houston voters’ signatures for a November 2017 ballot initiative for parity in pay between the Houston Fire and Police personnel.

This battle comes as a result of the fire union’s decision to sue the city of Houston and claims the administration under Mayor Sylvester Turner “failed to negotiate in good faith,” according to an article from the Houston Chronicle. 

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Photo: Facebook/Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association

In a recent post on the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association (HPFFA) Facebook page, they shared how the recent July 4th holiday was celebrated with mixed emotions. “On one hand, we wish a happy and safe Fourth of July for citizens and our families and friends. On the other, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner’s unanimously approved city ordinance immediately cuts pay for firefighters and ends overtime pay for firefighters working on national holidays.” They state the Mayor failed to ” inform firefighters about the details of the harsher employment terms he was imposing.”

What seems to be a David versus Goliath battle in the coming months is based on the fact as shared by the HPFFA that “Houston firefighter pay lags Houston police pay, on a rank-by-rank basis, by an average of about 60 percent.” Since 2011, Police have seen a 26% pay raise while firefighters have only seen a 3% increase according to their Facebook page. They also share that more Houston firefighters (15) have died in the line of duty since 2000 than any other local public safety agency.

Hitting the streets and making their voices known among the community of Houston is what the HPFFA mission will be leading up to the ballot to gather the support of the community and let the voters decide and bring about the justice the firefighters seek in pay and benefits not only for them but for their families.  Their petition drive website is www.LetTheVotersDecide.us

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