We Are, What We Do
The North Hudson Firefighters
In 1999 when
the five municipalities consisting of Guttenberg, North Bergen, Weehawken,
West New York and Union City unilaterally decided to merge their individual
fire departments into a single department under the newly created North
Hudson Regional Fire & Rescue, they disrupted long term collective
bargaining groups and firefighter international and fraternal organizations.
In direct response to this, the firefighter organizations of West New
York/Guttenberg IAFF Local 620, Weehawken FMBA Local 26, Union City
FMBA Local 12 and North Bergen IAFF Local 1387 formed a singular organization
to protect its members from any forms of injustice; to secure just compensation
for their services and equitable settlement of their grievances; to
promote the establishment of just and reasonable working conditions
and strive constantly for their improvement; to improve the efficiency
of its members; and to cultivate friendship and fellowship among its
members. Hence, the North Hudson FireFighters Association was established.
We are affiliated with the following organizations:
Hidden in the fine print of President Trump’s latest budget proposal is a detail that could directly impact 9/11 first responders: The reorganization of the federal agency that oversees their health treatment and monitoring.
Currently, the World Trade Center Health Program is housed within the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. That agency, in turn, is under the umbrella of the Centers for Disease Control.
Under the 2019 fiscal year budget for NIOSH put forth by the White House, that agency will be carved out of the CDC and placed within the National Institute of Health.
As part of your union’s ongoing effort to ensure all fire fighters, paramedics, EMS workers and other public safety employees have a voice in matters of public safety, we have worked with U.S. Congressional Representatives John Duncan (R-TN) and Dan Kildee (D-MI) to reintroduce the Public Safety Employer Employee Cooperation Act. The bill, H.R. 4846, ensures that all fire fighters and other public safety workers have access to basic collective bargaining rights in the workplace.
The re-introduction of the Cooperation Act marks the IAFF’s continued commitment to the rights of our members in a fight that has spanned many years.
While the partisan political environment in Washington, DC, has precluded us from advancing the Cooperation Act in recent years, establishing collective bargaining rights for every fire fighter in America remains one of the IAFF’s top legislative priorities. Based on the many strong relationships our union has built over the years with lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle, the time is right to move forward and renew the case for collective bargaining in the United States Congress.
The bill would provide those who protect the public a stronger collective voice on issues pertaining not only to their own safety, but the safety of the communities they serve. H.R. 4846 outlines five essential rights for all employees, including the right to form and join a union; have a contract; ensure the contract is enforced; bargain over wages, hours and terms of employment; and have a dispute mechanism. While many of our members live in jurisdictions in which these rights currently exist, many others go to work every day without these necessary protections.
The timing of the bill’s introduction is especially advantageous because it precedes the IAFF Legislative Conference, when hundreds of IAFF affiliate leaders from across the country will talk to their elected officials in Washington, DC, and help build support for the bill.
While it’s unlikely that the Cooperation Act will pass Congress this year, we will use this time to educate new members of Congress about the bill and build support, setting the stage for a time, not too far into the future, when circumstances will change and we have the opportunity to pass this legislation. In the meantime, we will lay the groundwork to win this battle.
This recall involves Kidde NightHawk talking combo smoke/CO alarm with model number KN-COSM-IB and manufacture dates between June 1, 2004 and December 31, 2010.
The alarms are hard-wired into a home’s electric power. The unit has a compartment on the back for the installation of a replaceable 9V backup battery.
The alarm is white, round and measures about 5 to 6 inches in diameter. “Kidde” is engraved on the front of the alarm.
“Kidde,” the model number and manufacture dates are printed on a label on the back on the alarm.
Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled alarms and contact Kidde directly for a free replacement alarm based on date of manufacture or a discount on a new alarm.
Kidde has receivedeight reports of incidents with the recalled alarms. No injuries have been reported.
Electrical distributors and home centers nationwide and online at Amazon.com from June 2004 through December 2010 for between $40 and $65.
Walter Kidde Portable Equipment Inc., of Mebane, N.C.
This recall involves two styles of Kidde fire extinguishers: plastic handle fire extinguishers and push-button Pindicator fire extinguishers.
Plastic handle fire extinguishers: The recall involves 134 models of Kidde fire extinguishers manufactured between January 1, 1973 and August 15, 2017, including models that were previously recalled in March 2009 and February 2015. The extinguishers were sold in red, white and silver, and are either ABC- or BC-rated. The model number is printed on the fire extinguisher label. For units produced in 2007 and beyond, the date of manufacture is a 10-digit date code printed on the side of the cylinder, near the bottom. Digits five through nine represent the day and year of manufacture in DDDYY format. Date codes for recalled models manufactured from January 2, 2012 through August 15, 2017 are 00212 through 22717. For units produced before 2007, a date code is not printed on the fire extinguisher.
Over the years, researchers have focused on the connection between firefighting and various diseases, including cancer and heart disease, but could firefighters also be more at risk of developingdementia and Alzheimer’s disease?
According to an article on firechief.com, although there has yet to be any official studies into the link between firefighting and dementia, a 2015 article highlights the risks of exposure to certain toxins and their link to dementia. These toxins are familiar to most firefighters and they will have undoubtedly come into contact with them at some point in their careers.
It takes a certain kind of person to run toward a fire, to answer a stranger’s call for help.
Firefighters spend their lives putting themselves in harm’s way, and to the general public they almost seem invincible. They come back out of burning buildings seemingly unscathed time and time again.
Fairly new information now suggests the real danger for firefighters is what happens well after the flames are out. All of their heroic actions years ago are catching up to them....
A recent study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health found about 68 percent of firefighters end up getting cancer, compared to around 22 percent of the general public. Research is pointing to the carcinogens released into the air when a modern day building goes up in flames. It’s toxic air that older generation firefighters had no clue to avoid.
The grand opening of the IAFF Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery -
the first facility of its kind exclusively for IAFF members - was held March 5, 2017. www.iaffrecoverycenter.com
Important Information on Supreme Court Health Care Decision
As many of you are aware, recently the Supreme Court handed down another landmark decision addressing the president’s controversial health care law known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In the case of King v. Burwell, the court was charged with determining if individuals purchasing health care through the federal exchange were permitted to receive tax subsidies. Since the court’s ruling, we have received numerous questions regarding the impact of the ruling on our members and their health plans. Generally speaking, there is no immediate effect on IAFF members or their plans. To help our IAFF members to better understand the ruling, we have prepared the following supplemental materials:
Regardless how the Supreme Court ruled, we have a major concern over the portion of the ACA which imposes a 40 percent excise tax on high-cost health plans beginning in 2018. The IAFF has taken a leading role in a coalition of labor and corporate interests in trying to repeal the excise tax. Current legislation (H.R. 2050) to repeal the tax has been introduced by Representative Joe Courtney (D-CT), a bipartisan bill with more than115 co-sponsors. We will continue our fight to repeal this provision of the ACA and work to ensure that the benefits our members and their families enjoy will not be diminished. I hope the information proves helpful. As always, I appreciate your hard work and leadership.
Harold A. Schaitberger
IAFF Calls Out Looters Of Public Pensions
Across America, state budgets are being balanced on the backs of current and former public employees by breaking commitments to fund their defined-benefit retirement plans. Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) is the latest to go this route, recently warning his state’s fire fighters, police officers, teachers and other public employees that he’ll propose skipping a couple (more) yearly installments against the state’s pension liability due to an unexpected revenue shortfall.
NIST Report Shows Crew Size Matters Study compared how long it took crews of three, four and five to handle the same tasks.
FIREHOUSE.COM- April 29, 2010 - WASHINGTON, D.C. - For years, firefighters across the nation have touted the importance of having enough crew members when they start to attack a fire.
Now, they have scientific research to back up their claim that size does matter when it comes to saving people from fires as well as making sure they go home after their shift.
On Wednesday, the National Institute of Standards and Technology released the results of an extensive study that used technology to determine how long it took for crews of two, three, four and five to handle the same 22 tasks.
"Four- and five- person crews were able to complete the 22 essential firefighting and rescue tasks in a residential setting 30 percent faster than the two-person crew and 25 percent faster than the three-person crews," said Jason Averill, NIST fire protection engineer and the project manager.
NIST announced the findings of the study to members of the fire service attending the annual Congressional Fire Services Institute event in Washington, D.C.
Tasks included stopping at the hydrant, positioning the engine, conducting scene size-up, engaging pump, establish 2 in/2 out etc.
The data also showed that the largest crew was able to apply water to the fire 22 percent faster than two-person crews.
The small crew also encountered a much larger fire upon arrival than the five person team.
NIST also used its fire dynamic simulator to determine slow, medium, and fast-growth fires and estimate how the crew sizes would affect the exposure of occupants to toxic gases.
"Two-person crews arriving later (than the larger ones) would also likely find a significant portion of the general public incapacitated by the time of the rescue," Averill said about his findings.
IAFF General President Harold A. Schaitberger lauded the research, saying it will be used as a tool for fire officers across the country as they educate public officials.
"This is an extremely important document," he said. "Now, we have the technology and research to back up what we've been telling politicians who are cutting budgets..."
He said the research validates NFPA recommendations regarding crew size. Schaitberger said while he understands the tough economic hardships, reducing the number of firefighters, stations or apparatus is not the answer.
In addition to firefighter safety, the public welfare is at risk, he said, when small crews are involved.
NIST received a federal Assistance to Firefighters Grant to fund the project that involved only career firefighters. Researchers said the results could be similar for combination or volunteer fire departments that have crews in their stations.
USFA Administrator Kelvin Cochran said the document will be utilized by those who need justification for additional personnel, equipment or training. This will give officers something to back up their requests.
"We now have the technology, the science to prove what we've known for a long time -- it's very dangerous for a small crew to attempt an attack," he said.
A 2,000-square-foot, two-story building was specifically constructed for the study on the grounds of Montgomery County, Md. Fire Rescue training center.
Rooms contain cameras as well as instruments to measure toxic gases and temperatures The data is recorded on computers and other monitoring equipment located in a separate section of the building.
Each assignment included a truck and three engines.
"Our study is the fist to quantify fire service lifesaving and firefighting operations for a low-hazard residential structure including the effects of changes in crew size, arrival time and stagger on rescue and suppression effectiveness," Averill explained to the crowd.
Dennis Compton, chairman of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, called it a landmark study. "This can really help everyone," he said.
"It will benefit local decision makers tremendously as they work to determine and provide the resources necessary to adequately protect their communities from fire and other life safety emergencies," Compton said.
Watch some footage from the experiments.
Credit: International Association of Fire Fighters