The Fort Worth Professional Firefighters Association is suing the city of Fort Worth in an overtime wage dispute, according to Firehouse.com. The lawsuit comes on the heels of an overtime policy change that affected the pay of 21 employees at the Fire Alarm Office, which handles 911 calls and dispatch. The lawsuit claims that a policy change in January 2009 was made outside collective bargaining. The previous policy paid all the firefighters time and a half for overtime, even if the firefighter took off vacation or sick time during the same week.
The lawsuit is seeking an injunction to this stop policy change, as well as to compensate employees who lost money because of the change.
“Their suit basically says the city of Fort Worth committed an unfair labor practice,” said Jim Tate, president of the Fort Worth chapter of the Texas State Association of Fire Fighters. “This was for an approximate 15-month period and only affected 21 firefighters in the Fire Alarm Office, so there won’t be a lot of back pay involved.”
It is a shame that these firefighters had to file a lawsuit to recover the wages owed to them. Kudos to the firefighters for taking a stand and not accepting the unfair policy change.
Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob—Los Angeles employment law attorneys