Layoffs & Trucks Removed From Service If Tulsa Fire Union Doesn’t Approve Deal
By Craig Day, The News On 6
TULSA, OK -- Tulsa firefighters will vote later this week on a deal that would save 147 jobs. If approved, no firefighters would miss a day of work.
If it isn't, in addition to layoffs, service at a number of fire stations across the city would be scaled back. That has some worried about response time.
Like most folks, Tremayne Anderson and Harold Campbell are busy making a living. But not so busy they can't keep up with Tulsa's budget crisis.
"There's not enough money to spread around and everyone is fighting for it," said Harold Campbell, a Tulsa resident.
If Tulsa fire union members approve a 5.2% pay cut for everyone, 147 jobs will be saved. If not, there will be layoffs.
Campbell and Anderson hate to think of that happening.
"I'm not for anyone losing their jobs, especially in a time like this that we're living in. I'm not for it," said Campbell.
"There's a better chance of losing life and things like that and that's not something we need in Tulsa," said Tremayne Anderson, a Tulsa resident.
In addition to job loss, fire service would also be impacted if the union doesn't approve the plan. No fire stations would be closed, but ten stations across the city with multiple companies would each have one of their trucks removed from service.
One of those stations is near Kathy Banks' neighborhood.
"Response time might be slower, and lives might be lost," said Kathy Banks, a Tulsa resident.
Tulsa's fire department has set its own standard of under six minutes for response time, which they reach 90 percent of the time. But with fewer trucks and manpower, firefighters and the people they protect worry safety would suffer.
They're anxiously awaiting the fire union's decision.
"Sometimes you've got to sacrifice. And the best thing, sacrifice so everybody could keep their jobs, you know, rather than losing them and losing those engines also, because we need as much help as we can get," said Anderson.
The fire union has three days to go over the proposal, and then three days to vote. Those three days cover all three shifts. The outcome of the voting is expected Sunday evening.