Belmont Firefighters Agree To Drug/Alcohol Testing In New Contract

Photo: Belmont Fire in action.

Drug and alcohol testing policy is now part of firefighters job after the Belmont Board of Selectmen approved a three-year contract with the 54 members of the International Association of Firefighter Local 1637 at its Monday, April 25 meeting. 

“The firefighters really stepped up to the plate with the town” reaching an agreement after two years of negotiations, said Belmont Fire Department Chief David Frizzell. 

While the mandatory testing is new to the department, “it’s becoming the norm among the majority of top tier fire departments,” said Assistant Fire Chief Angus Davison.

The contract, which is retroactive to July 1, 2014, and runs through June 31, 2017, provides for an annual salary cost and living adjustment of two percent and while 13 personnel will see their yearly Advanced Life Savings stipend bumped up from $2,000 to $2,750. 

New employees will pay more for their health insurance contributions, from 20 to 25 percent, while seeing a 25 cent increase per hour in compensation. There are also changes in benefits for personnel who obtain associate’s and bachelor’s degrees in fire science. 

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  1. David Chase says

    Has anyone studied this drug/alcohol abuse enough to determine if it is a problem worth addressing in labor contracts? It would be a shame to spend the money on testing for something that isn’t really costing us anything.

    In contrast, have we considered training for reducing unconscious bias? The news has been sadly full of police making unfortunate snap decisions, and there is research to suggest that unconscious bias plays a role. It would be great to help keep our police out of the bad news. We have bias training where I work, it’s clearly a general problem in the tech industry for hiring and promotion, and we don’t carry guns or make decisions with irreversible consequences.

  2. Emil Larson says

    Great article,Like most people out there who have a problem with addiction to alcohol.I began to reach the point where I started to believe it was hopeless and that I was never going to be able to stop drinking. After almost losing my life in a car accident caused by my drinking I decided enough was enough and I said to myself Surely there must be a way how to quit drinking.I tried looking into treatments for alcoholics but it was all the same things that I had tried previously, then someone recommended to me a personal review at I gave it a try and i couldnt be more excited about the rsults as i finaly stop consuming alcohol and what its nice ,i dont feel need to drink again. Alcohol Free Forever uses a combination of alternative treatments such as hypnosis and meditation as well as helping you get to the bottom of your reasons for drinking to help you quit drinking for good.It was a real succes for me

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