Austin firefighters, city agree on resolution to change hiring process
After the firefighters’ union in Austin seemed to have won an impasse with the city over new terms for a hiring process and cadet training standards, a Department of Justice (DOJ) attorney issued a letter threatening that the resolution may send the DOJ back to court. Subsequently, the union issued an amended resolution, KXAN reported on February 5.
The DOJ cited concerns about the delay of priority hiring of minorities in the letter to the union. After the amended resolution was passed by Austin City Council members, the council urged the city staff to hire an outside agency to test cadets within the timeline outlined in the DOJ Consent Decree, but only after the Austin Firefighters’ Association and the city reach a new employment deal.
The city of Austin and the firefighter’s association had yet to establish a new employment deal since the old agreement’s terms lapsed in 2009. According to the resolution, Austin’s capacity for diversity and fair treatment in the fire department depends on ongoing, collective bargaining.
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