Cleveland EMS Employees Win Ruling Over Work Shifts - @ JEMS.com


Cleveland EMS Employees Win Ruling Over Work Shifts


 
 

Mark Puente | | Thursday, January 3, 2008


CLEVELAND -- Cleveland Emergency Medical Service workers won a court battle Friday that will allow some paramedics to work 12-hour shifts.

The ruling by Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Steven Terry reinforced a decision last month by an arbitrator in favor of the union.

The city appealed the arbitrator's ruling.

About half of the city's paramedics will work 12-hour shifts and the remainder will work eight-hour shifts. The shifts will be awarded based on seniority. The paramedics prefer the 12-hour shifts because of having more days off every week, along with overtime pay.

The longer shifts are not new. The city switched EMS workers to 12-hour shifts in 1995. But the city notified the union in October 2006 that it planned to cut the shifts back to eight hours in April 2007.

Cleveland officials favor eight-hour shifts because they keep more ambulances in service at one time and save the city about $500,000 a year in overtime, said EMS Commissioner Ed Eckart.

Workers on the longer shifts work 84 hours every pay period. The eight-hour shifts eliminated four hours of overtime every payday, Eckart said.

More important, he said, the eight-hour shifts cut the average response times by more than one minute. The response times could now increase, he said.

Stephen G. Palek, head of the Cleveland Association of Rescue Employees Local 1975, disagreed, saying the starting or ending time of a shift does not affect response times. A computerized-dispatch system put in place last year is the reason response times decreased. The shift change does not pose any danger to residents, he said.

"It's a scare tactic," Palek said. "It's all about money. The city cut our wages."

The average number of ambulances in service at any one time will not change, he added.

The city will not appeal the latest ruling and plans to monitor the situation.

To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: mpuente@plaind.com, 216-999-4141


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Industry News, Legal and Ethical, Operations and Protcols, Training

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Improving Survival from Cardiac Arrest Using ACD-CPR + ITD

Using active compression-decompression CPR with an ITD has been shown to improve 1-year survival from cardiac arrest by 33%.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

California Firefighters save Man on Flight

Patient was conscious and talking when United flight landed.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Over Half of Seattle Fire Stations Test Positive for MRSA

Surprisingly high results come from test kits based on earlier study.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

AMR Crew Rescues Mississippi Driver from Fiery Crash

Rescue during crash in Jackson is caught on video.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Hands On February 2015

Here’s a look at this month’s product hands on.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Nightwatch Series Premiere Party

JEMS Editor-in-Chief A.J. Heightman attends the series premiere of A&E's new reality show, "Nightwatch."
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Ottawa Chemical Investigation

Chemicals and suspicious package are probed at two locations
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Braun Ambulances' EZ Door Forward

Helps to create a safer ambulance module.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


More Product Videos >