Monday, June 24, 2024
HomeLocal / Area NewsCONROE EMPLOYEES SUSPENDED NOT BECAUSE OF FIGHTING FIRE BUT BECAUSE DID NOT...

CONROE EMPLOYEES SUSPENDED NOT BECAUSE OF FIGHTING FIRE BUT BECAUSE DID NOT NOTIFY EMPLOYER WHERE THEY WERE

Press Release

Many of our volunteers are employed by other agencies. As I understand it, two of them responded with our department to fight wildfires in the Magnolia area over the weekend, despite being scheduled to work for the City of Conroe Public Works. They have been suspended by the City of Conroe Public Works. It is also my understanding that they were suspended because they failed to notify their supervisors with the City of Conroe Public Works.

I absolutely do not support the firefighter’s actions in failing to notify Conroe. Any employer would be upset at being minus two people with no warning. These men did something commendable by fighting the fire, but they did something wrong when they did not notify their employer, and I in no way condone that inaction.

Had these firefighters informed our agency they were scheduled to work, we would have found someone else. They are volunteers and we understand that they are not always available. There would have been no punitive actions on our part. We have always had a good working relationship with the City of Conroe and hope that will continue. This situation is between the firefighters and the City, and has nothing to do with us.

There has been a great deal of misinformation spread regarding this situation and most of it has been traced back to social media such as Facebook. None of our staff or officers has contacted anyone regarding this situation because it does not directly involve us. We simply happen to be the agency with whom the two suspended city employees volunteered.

A Conroe newspaper stated that I was not available for comment on Monday, and that part of the story was correct. I had no knowledge of this situation until midday Monday and I have no plans to become involved. I am making this statement only because mine and my department’s names have been dragged into it, and I felt I needed to clarify the fact that me nor my agency has any involvement in this matter. I have spoken with the volunteers and told them they need to deal with their employer.

Neither I, nor my staff, have any further comment regarding this matter, and ask the news media to allow us instead to focus on the job of protecting our community and others from the fires that are devastating our state.

Thank You,

Chief Randy Oliver

River Plantation Fire Department

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