IAFF Local 237 Year in Review

IAFF Local 237 Year in Review 2011

 2011 is a significant year for Fire Fighters across North America.  2011 is the tenth year anniversary of that Terrible Tragic Terrorist Attack that killed over 3000 people, including 343 professional Fire Fighters who paid the ultimate sacrifice.  On September 11 we held our Fire Fighters Memorial and paid tribute to those Fallen Fire Fighters, as well as all fire Fighters who paid that ultimate sacrifice.  This Memorial was well attended by numerous emergency services from southern Alberta.  The LFD Honor Guard and the Pipes and Drums band did a fantastic job organizing this Memorial.

Here in Lethbridge we did have one of our own pass away in the Line of Duty. Retired Deputy Chief Ted (Shakey) Bochan passed away June 26, 2011, from esophageal cancer which is recognized as a presumptive cancer from his dedicated Fire Fighting career. 

Some of our membership also attended the line of Duty death of Battalion Chief James Thomas Banting of IAFF Local 2494  in Fort McMurray. 

This has been a very busy year for the Executive of IAFF Local 237.  A major project of renovating our local office building was started in 2011.  This renovation is expected to be completed in March of 2012.  Once completed, this office building will give us the ability to host our membership meetings, labour management meetings, training seminars, as well as small social functions.  We do look forward to the grand opening in 2012.

Our Collective agreement ended December 31, 2010. We have been negotiating throughout the year to complete a new agreement.

The Executive board was able to send 2 of its members to the IAFF Affiliate Leaders Training Summit. This is the IAFF’s foremost educational event, providing affiliate leaders with the skills needed to build their local union. Our Executive also attended our provincial convention which had a day dedicated to Leaders Training. Through our provincial Fire Fighters Association we had a meeting with all our local provincial executives and their respective chiefs and or deputy chiefs to discuss some common goals and objectives.

Other Educational Symposiums and conferences that we attended were:

The IAFF Redmond Symposium, which reflects our commitment to explore the cause of every IAFF member’s death, injury or illness and address solutions to further protect our membership.

The Dominick F. Barbera EMS Conference which explores aspects of fire based emergency medical services. From emergency response system and operations, to medical direction, this Conference covers the most relevant topics affecting fire service-based EMS systems.

The IAFF Canadian Legislative Conference. This conference gives Canadian fire fighters a chance to meet and discuss key legislative issues and to conduct lobby meetings with their members of Parliament and senators.

The IAFF Canadian Policy Conference: This conference gives Canadian Fire Fighters the ability to meet and discuss important Canadian issues and bring them forward to the IAFF International conference.

Executive members also attended arbitration hearings in Grand Prairie and Airdrie as well as attended the IAFF Canadian Western conference in Whitehorse.

Our Local launched a new WEB site and e-mail service for our members to improve communications within our association.  Please check out our WEB site at www.lethbridgefirefighters.com

The Provincial association worked with the Provincial Government in adding four cancers to the WCB presumptive coverage list. Those four cancers are prostate, breast, skin and multiple myeloma, bringing the total to 14. If a firefighter is diagnosed with these, or any of the other 10 cancers on the list, and the firefighter meets the exposure criteria, the cancer is presumed to be work related.  We are very grateful for this regulation as it does take some of the burden off Family members of fallen fire fighters.

IAFF Local 237 is proud to represent the Professional Fire Fighters, Paramedics, and Communication specialists that serve the citizens of Lethbridge


Rob Chollak


IAFF Local 237

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