Do you know:
There was a sexual harassment complaint filed at the Georgia Fire Department that was not investigated to the complainant’s satisfaction through legal channels.
There was no investigation into an accident with a fire truck driven by a firefighter, who is also a selectboard member.
The firefighters have raised safety concerns regarding trucks, and they were ignored for several months.
The way repairs were billed through the town appeared like a cover-up so people wouldn’t notice.
The selectboard changed the policy on how the fire chief and the officers are chosen.
The firefighters used the correct process to resolve the issues, but the selectboard refused to talk with them.
The chief chose officers, including the safety officer, and not the most qualified of the firefighters.
The chief dismissed an assistant chief, who had been the chief for about five years and chose another firefighter less qualified.
The firefighters who were fired wrote letters to the chief about four months earlier, asking to resolve safety, communication and other issues, some of which had lingered for about a year.
The selectboard has hired several lawyers for these hearings. Do you wonder how much this is costing you in taxes?
The morale of the department has decreased drastically in the last three years. Other firefighters have quit because of the injustices throughout the department. The fired firefighters represent cumulatively 63 years of service.
Do you wonder what else is going on?
I know you are all very busy. I don’t ordinarily attend my town’s selectboard meetings either (though I might now!). I have attended all five Georgia special meetings, because my grandson is one of those firefighters fired for not signing a confidentiality agreement that was tabled at a meeting until further discussion could happen, since the chief was not in attendance. The chief chose to not put the confidentiality agreement on the monthly meeting agendas after requested and did not communicate with any of the firefighters, until they were notified to attend a discipline hearing.
I strongly suggest you support your firefighters and question your board’s decisions.
Marilyn Zophar, extremely proud Gramma of Andrew Dunsmore