January 19, 2012 |
When the state agency that oversees the city's finances commissioned a report on the Philadelphia Fire Department two years ago, it was with the hope that a rational examination of the department's political hot-button issues could be done. That study, released Wednesday, did not shy away from some of the most controversial problems - referencing in the first few pages the distrust between labor and management, and the history of racial and gender tensions in the ranks. The report also described a Fire Department culture "resistant to change," and was critical of a management structure that "tends to reinforce the status quo. " "The gap between the current reality and the department's aspirations for itself is wide," the study said.
February 9, 2001 |
Firefighter Tim McShea is a modest kind of a guy. For 23 years, he has been a hard-working firefighter, spending most of his career assigned to busy Ladder 22 in Juniata. But besides fighting fires, this decorated firefighter spends every minute of his spare time volunteering. He coaches kids for Holy Innocents CYO Athletics and St. Hubert's High School JV Softball. He's president of the Ancient Order of Hibernians Division 22. He sings with the Mummers Chorus and runs the Juniata Strutters.
April 3, 2015 |
A day after an internal presentation of a Philadelphia Fire Department critique detailing errors and delays in the December blaze that killed Firefighter Joyce Craig, the report's author wrote in an official department log that he was being pressured to redact portions of his work. Deputy Chief Rich Davison, the author of the report, wrote that Deputy Commissioner Jesse Wilson - the department's second-in-command - had asked for redactions and explained his request with the suggestion that "some statements in the critique could hurt the city," according to a copy of the entry obtained by The Inquirer.
March 19, 2015 |
Two Philadelphia Fire Department employees have accepted undisclosed punishment in a sexual harassment scandal that has roiled the department, officials said Tuesday. The employees, whose names and ranks were not released, waived a departmental hearing on the allegations against them and chose to accept punishment, Frank Keel, a spokesman for the firefighters' union, said in a statement. They are among seven - two battalion chiefs, a captain, a lieutenant, a paramedic, and two firefighters - who faced discipline for their interactions with a paramedic who filed a sexual harassment complaint against the department last year.
February 25, 2015 |
HAVING YOUR BOSS unzip his pants and "adjust himself" in front of you should not be part of anyone's workday. Neither should opening a desk drawer and discovering that a colleague has ejaculated all over its contents. But these stomach-turning events - and others just as offensive - were not unusual for female members of the Philadelphia Fire Department, the Daily News has found. Such incidents hint at larger ingrained problems - sexual harassment, discrimination and questionable relationships between supervisors and subordinates - that the department's leaders have ignored for years, critics say. In fact, the Inspector General's Office referenced systemic issues in its investigation into allegations that 15 Fire Department employees had sexual encounters with or sexually harassed a mentally troubled female paramedic.
July 29, 1991 |
ARSON INVESTIGATOR Tom Halpin, of the Philadelphia Fire Department, examines the charred remains of Philadelphia Suzuki in the 2600 block of Castor Avenue. A four-alarm fire destroyed the Northeast motorcycle dealership early yesterday morning. The cause of the fire, which gutted the building, was under investigation.
May 6, 2010
WILLIAM RICHMOND was the fire commissioner during the siege on Osage Avenue. 1985: The MOVE Commission said that after a police helicopter dropped a bomb on a bunker on the roof of the MOVE house, starting a fire, Richmond conferred with Police Commissioner Gregore Sambor and decided to let the bunker burn. The commission said allowing the fire to burn constituted the use of fire as a tactical weapon. The MOVE Commission report also said that Richmond had advised Sambor that they could let the bunker burn and contain the blaze later.
September 21, 1994 |
The eight-alarm Quaker Lace factory fire might have been contained and 12 nearby houses saved if the owner had not removed the fire walls from the rambling 150-year-old structure two weeks ago, a city official said yesterday. Licenses and Inspections Commissioner Bennett Levin said that inspectors were at the vacant North Philadelphia factory on Sept. 8 for a routine inspection and found demolition work being performed inside without a permit. Inspectors declared the building dangerous at that time, Levin said, because fire walls had been torn down.
July 19, 2004
RE VERN Anastasio's letter (July 1): I couldn't agree more. As the son of a retired Philadelphia firefighter, I believe it is morally wrong to cut the city budget on the backs of the hard-working men and women of the Philadelphia Fire Department. After 9/11, the brave men and women who protect our streets and neighborhoods are needed more than ever to keep our great city safe. I also agree that the Street administration "is doing a perfectly horrible job growing our economy, our jobs, our services and our fiscal security.
June 22, 2007 |
Funds are pouring in for families displaced by Wednesday's seven-alarm fire in Kensington thanks to an Internet campaign spearheaded by a nonprofit whose community center at 3200 Potter St. was destroyed in the blaze. The Simple Way, a Christian grassroots organization that has been in the Kensington community for 10 years, has raised more than $4,770 for the displaced families through its Web site, said Nora Cohen, a volunteer for the group. Shane Claiborne, a founding member of The Simple Way, said in a telephone interview that "literally hundreds of people locally, around the country, and even folks around the globe have sent donations, which is really exciting.