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Friday, February 17, 2017

Bullying, harassment a problem in parts of Fairfax fire department, report says

Bullying, harassment and discrimination are perceived to be problems in parts of the Fairfax County Fire Department, and nearly 40 percent of firefighters responding to a survey had experienced or witnessed it, according to a new report released Wednesday.

The analysis of the culture of the Fairfax County Fire Department was commissioned by the county in the wake of the high-profile suicide of firefighter Nicole Mittendorff, who was the subject of sexist and derogatory comments on a local Web forum before her death in April. It remains unclear who posted the remarks on the Fairfax Underground forum, or whether they played a role in Mittendorff's suicide, but fire department officials have been exploring whether the messages might have been posted by her colleagues.

Mittendorff's death and a series of lawsuits by other female firefighters alleging discrimination and sexual harassment prompted questions about the treatment of women in the department and touched off a discussion nationally about the low number of women in firefighting and the problems they face.

[Female firefighter’s suicide is a ‘fire bell in the night’]

The 53-page report by a management consultant group found strong dedication and pride among the Fairfax department’s 1,400 rank-and-file firefighters, but also issues with bullying, senior leadership and conflict management.



Anonymous said...

yea, it is alive and well here on the shore too.
where I work bullying is a competition sport.
I have never worked in such an ugly hostile place.
So sad

Anonymous said...

The same thing happened in the Salisbury Fire Department and the Mayor and Council, the EEOC or the ACLU didn't do anything about it.

Anonymous said...

Not sure what the harassment was, but as a female, I have never thought that a female is qualified to be a firefighter. A paramedic or emt is fine, but not a firefighter.

lmclain said...

Stop giving people who can't do the job a position in the fire department. Or the police, for that matter.
Most women can't lift a ladder over their head, drag a dummy 50 yards, operate all the equipment, etc.
We make them firefighters anyway. To avoid lawsuits.
I know FOR A FACT that women firefighters have been "passed" just to meet quota's. Fact. ABSOLUTE fact.
It MIGHT cause a little resentment with the OTHER firefighters who CAN do it and watch her take a paycheck while she "lives her dream".
The problem? Her "dream" may get someone killed when she is forced to try pulling a 250lb man out of a house, or is assigned to take the chain saw to the roof and cut a hole.
If I have to constantly pick up your slack, I'm going to bully you, too. ESPECIALLY when YOU are yanking down the same $$$ as me, but doing 1/3 of the danger. Political correctness does NOT belong in the police and fire department. You don't get to risk MY life so you can call yourself something you really aren't....
Let the hating begin!!!!

Anonymous said...

it's in EVERY fd. if you're not in the clique you ain't poop