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Josh PetersonBritish Columbia
Ryan StewartNova Scotia
Mike StrongNewfoundland, Labardor & New Brunswick
Mike MymkoManitoba & Saskatchewan
Jason ElderAlberta & The North
Brendalee BlaneyStaff Resource
Terms of Reference
Firefighter Committee – OPI Terms of Reference
Purpose / Objective
The Union of National Defence Employees (UNDE) has established an UNDE FR OPI to be the spokesperson for UNDE on all issues of national concern that affect Department of National Defence (DND) firefighters.
The UNDE FR OPI will be the main point of contact between DND and UNDE on national issues that affect DND civilian firefighters.
Selection of the UNDE FR OPI
The selection and appointment of the UNDE FR OPI is the responsibility of the UNDE National President and the UNDE National Executive Committee(NEC).
Roles and responsibilities of the UNDE FR OPI
The roles and responsibilities of the UNDE FR OPI include:
- will be the Chairperson of the UNDE FR Steering Committee;
- will be the Co-Chair of the DND / CF Firefighters Wellness Advisory Committee;
- will be the spokesperson for UNDE with DND on all national issues affecting DND civilian firefighters;
- will liaise closely with the UNDE FR Resource Officer to ensure all firefighters are kept informed of all national issues;
- will sit on all National FR Committees that DND establishes to address firefighters national issues;
- will ensure that members of the UNDE FR Steering Committee keep the National Officers in their regions informed of firefighters’ national issues.
Firefighter Wellness Program vs Timed Evaluation Test
FR Wellness Program vs Timed Evaluation Test
Following a six-year battle by this union to stop DND from imposing a physical fitness test, we must regretfully inform you that the physical fitness test will go ahead starting April 1, 2000. A mediation session held earlier this month, attended by the national FR steering committee, was unsuccessful.
Both parties signed an ‘agreement in principle’ (appendix A) for a wellness advisory committee, since we are clearly in accord with a healthy and fit firefighting community.
The union, however, cannot support the requirements of a physical fitness test. Although UNDE acknowledges that the CFFM intends to implement the physical fitness test (appendix B), at this point there are certain aspects of the test that UNDE believes are harmful to our members. In particular, it is our view that no person should participate in the timed evaluation test. There are very serious safety issues associated with the physical fitness test, and it is our responsibility to alert our members to these inherent dangers.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please contact your vice-president.
Agreement in Principle
It is the intent of the CFFM to implement a firefighter wellness program designed to enhance the health and wellbeing of DND/CF firefighters.
In doing so, the CFFM, in consultation with UNDE, will establish a Wellness Advisory Committee comprised of key stakeholders to provide recommendations and/or advice on issues affecting the wellness of firefighters. The composition and terms of reference of this committee will be established with a target date of 01 April 2000.
It is understood that:
– The Personnel Support Program (PSP) will be a primary vehicle in the implementation of the Wellness Program.
– The elements, the ‘Strengthening of the Forces’ initiative will be extended to civilian firefighters whenever feasible.
– Firefighters shall have the opportunity for one hour of physical fitness training per shift/day, subject to operational requirements.
– Firefighters have full entitlement to PSP facilities and services and, wherever not possible, the CFFM will make best efforts to facilitate alternative arrangements (such as paid membership to a physical fitness club).
– Firefighters should have access to PT facilities which have the proper equipment in the proper operating condition, and the CFFM should facilitate such access.
– The CFFM recognizes the requirement of firefighters to maintain a healthy lifestyle and will investigate options is an attempt to mitigate negative repercussions against a firefighter injured while participating in a sanctioned PT activity while off-duty.
– The CFFM, in consultation with the advisory committee, will seek improvements around the Health Canada medical testing process.
Acknowledgement (without prejudice)
The Canadian Forces Fire Marshall intends to implement the Fire Fit physical fitness test as developed by Queen’s University, with a target commencement date of 01 April 2000.
The Union of National Defence Employees OPI recognizes the benefits of a firefighter wellness program, however is unable to support the planned mandatory physical fitness test.
UNDE requests that the CFFM make all reasonable efforts to mitigate any negative impact to the union membership associated with the implementation of the test.
The CFFM intends to make best efforts to mitigate such impacts.