The New Era - All about Sweet Home since 1929

By Sean C. Morgan
Of The New Era 

SHFAD makes changes to intern, resident volunteer program

 

March 31, 2015



Fire Chief Dave Barringer has ended the Sweet Home Fire and Ambulance District’s intern medic and resident volunteer programs and hired them as part-time emergency medical technicians.

The change affects nine medics, including three resident volunteers and six intern positions, Barringer said. The program includes room for 10 EMTs, but he isn’t filling the final position until a new battalion chief is selected.

Barringer is planning the program for the 2015-16 budget, he told the SHFAD Board of Directors.

“I know they’re not technically budgeted,” Barringer said, but he planned to have the program in place on April 1, in the 2014-15 budget year.

Barringer attended a Department of Labor meeting recently and learned that resident volunteers couldn’t be used any differently from other department volunteers, he said. They were making $12 per call.

As a result of the meeting, Barringer had to change their status within the department, he said. Losing the resident volunteers would drop the district below adequate staffing levels.

Without them, the department has just three medics on each shift, Barringer said. With this program, four will be on each shift.

Less than that would create real issues, he said, especially when medics are on vacation or sick.

That’s the number needed to allow the department to make entry into a building during a fire call with the staff members that are at the Fire Hall, said Battalion Chief Shannon Pettner.

The part-time EMTs work for minimum wage, Barringer said. Two will work every fifth day for an average of 33.6 hours per week.

 
 

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