Friday, March 24, 2017

Initial Hiring Differences

The hiring process of Part 143 and the current process in effect at AFD are the difference between night and day.  I have stated that if 143 passes, AFD union will get exactly what is in part 143, no more and no less.  The AFD clearly states,” if you are NOT EMT-I or Paramedic certified…by the hire date you will begin your training as an EMT-I Trainee.  If you have that certificate you will begin your training as a Firefighter Trainee.  But first you have to be selected .

The AFD uses an independent contractor to administer all Industrial/Organizational Solutions out of Westchester, Illinois is their contractor (I/OS).  First the student check-in and take the written test administered by I/OS.  The tests are graded and the top 250 are allowed to run 1.5 miles and the times are recorded by a local independent contractor.  A physical and mental examination will be administered by a physician and a PHD in psychiatry.  Then they will proceed to the Physical Ability Test.  The timed events include Rescue Maze, Aerial Ladder, Charged Hose Drag, Equipment Carry, Ventilation Simulator, Body Carry and Ladder Raise.  This is administered by TCC.  Those who pass will be scheduled for the Panel Interviews and later the Command Staff interviews.  A combination of all scores will be posted and Conditional Job Offers will be extended accordingly.

Part 143 Subchapter B  Classification and Appointment

Notification of the exam must be posted 10 days prior, in the main lobby of the city hall and in the commission's office.  The notice must show the position to be filled or for which the examination is to be held, and the date, time, and place of the examination.  143.025 (i)  The grade to be placed on the eligibility list for each applicant shall be computed by adding an applicant's points (for military service), if any, to the applicant's grade on the written examination.  Each applicant's grade on the written examination is based on a maximum grade of 100 percent and is determined entirely by the correctness of the applicant's answers to the questions.  The test will be administered by the Civil Service Commission.  143.026.  PROCEDURE FOR FILLING BEGINNING POSITIONS.  (a)  When a vacancy occurs in a beginning position in a fire department, the department head shall request in writing from the commission the names of suitable persons from the eligibility list.  The director shall certify to the municipality's chief executive the names of the three persons having the highest grades on the eligibility list. (b)  From the three names certified, the chief executive shall appoint the person having the highest grade.

Sec. 143.022.  PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS AND EXAMINATIONS.  (a)  The commission shall set the age and physical requirements for applicants for beginning and promotional positions in accordance with this chapter.  The requirements must be the same for all applicants.(b)  The commission shall require each applicant for a beginning or a promotional position to take an appropriate physical examination.  The commission may require each applicant for a beginning position to take a mental examination.  The examination shall be administered by a physician, psychiatrist, or psychologist, as appropriate, appointed by the commission.  The municipality shall pay for each examination.

And that Ladies and gentlemen is the difference between Civil Service hiring and current AFD hiring.



  1. Mr Parker, your information is mostly correct. The city does use contractor I/OS for validated entrance and promotional written exams. This contract is reviewed and updated annually and the city bids it out to keep in competitive. This contractor also provides for the promotional assessment centers (practical, tactical, oral boards, personnel/management assessment, etc.). They use outside facilitators and assessors for officer assessments but the department facilitates and assesses the apparatus operator assessments (driving and pumping). I/OS did validate the driver's assessments.

    This contractor also provides expert testimony on their intellectual property, if need be, if the city is sued by a candidate for disparate treatment or something else. We haven't been by the way.

    The city also uses a different contractor for the entrance exam running (aerobic capacity) test and another one for the physical ability test (hose drag, climbing, rescue drag, etc).

    The city provides the employee stakeholder panel and the final chiefs interviews.

    If the union wins, they will need to negotiate all of this back. 143.002 provides for physical testing etc. So, the city and the union will have to figure this out after a winning election. Seems wasteful to re-due what we already have. I don think either side has a big issue on this part. HOWEVER, this is probably really about the chief selection process...

    The union hates the fact that city "appoints" its senior chief officers (battalion, deputy, assistant and the chief). They want to "limit the amount of appointments" through 143. 143 does limit how certain high level chiefs are selected according to department population size. If the union wins, the city can only appoint 2-3 senior chiefs. This will cause cost increases because "tested" chiefs are not as accountable as "appointed or at-will" chiefs are to the city; these officers control overtime, policies, staffing and resource use. Be careful about this voters!!!

    All appointed chiefs are currently selected after going through city interviews and assessment/selection processes for managers and executives. Eligible candidates are regularly promoted captains and could be some lieutenants.

    The "audit" was a challenge to the current way of business. The city was validated, So now all the union has is this election to take control of the fire department.

    Ask who the advisers, activists and leadership are on the union side? Those "yellow shirts" at events and council meetings.Those guys have been overlooked for promotions because of their past performance, discipline or open personal hostility towards the incumbent chiefs or the city; they have lost their voluntary overtime; or they have been misled by the union eboard. They want to control senior leadership positions, get their overtime back, and force the city to negotiate everything that is done. If they win, look for a strong movement towards a collective bargaining vote.

    They want a contract to control want the department provides in services for the community and to control their own staffing (overtime), pay and benefits. They are selfish. Look at what they did during the spousal healthcare coverage debacle...this union will only, and has only, represented the 30-60 members that show up to their meetings. They take from other employees to get what they want.

    Thank you Mr. Parker for keeping the facts on the table. Have they agreed to any open debate? lol...

    Vote no!

  2. Hey all you Anonymous people out there I want you to know this hypocritical fact, and it is a fact. Your APFF President came to Arlington from the Desoto Fire Department, for what reason I don't know. But the Desoto Department was part 143 Civil Service. Now he was age 39 at the time and if we were civil service he would have been too old. But we don't have an upper limit because we feel it is age discrimination. So he took advantage of our system and now he wants to change it back to rules that would not allow him a position here. Now I'm not going to call the guy a hypocrite, but I am going to say that his actions are hypocritical, because he is pulling up the ladder behind him, and not allowing the next guy the same opportunity that he received.

  3. I just received a comment from an anonymous source pointing out to me how I have been discourteous. The comment did not deserve publishing but it deserves acknowledgement. I fail to see how the above comment is in any way derogatory. It in fact reveals only the truth concerning what the Union President is doing. If the truth can't be revealed to the public where shall it be displayed? I find the truth refreshing, and I am certain that it will not come from the Union.

  4. The union President quit Desoto and came here because he was. 36 yr old man stuck on an ambulance as a firefighter/paramedic. AFD doesn't have ambulances. He has never taken a promotional exam in Arlington. So he gets to work with at least a three person crew and be responsible for nothing yet be an expert at criticism. His leadership team are bullies, been in trouble, overlooked on appointed positions, or lost overtime.
    Citizens, demand an open debate or at least verifiable proof at what they say. The city has to prove everything, expect the same from a union trying to take control.

    Vote No!


Thank you for your comment.