FDNY looking for members who booed NY Attorney General Tish James – NBC New York

There could be more fallout for the New York City firefighters who booed Attorney General Letitia James during a graduation ceremony last week.

The FDNY said its trying to figure out who was behind all the heckling. An internal memo obtained by News 4 lays out how the department is investigating the matter, which is getting pushback from union representatives who said the issue should be a learning experience, not a disciplinary action.

The attorney general received the cold shoulder from FDNY members at a promotion ceremony, where several boos could be heard as James stepped up to the microphone to speak and swear in the first Black female chaplain in department history.

“Come on, we’re in a house of God,” James said to the crowd.

The heckling continued during her speech, at one point a Trump chant appeared to break out.

“Trump, Trump, Trump,” cry a few different voices.

The FDNY is now working to identify those members who gave James an icy welcome. News 4 obtained an internal memo urging members to come forward so “we don’t have to hunt them down,” saying there’s clear video of the entire incident.

The union representing firefighters fired back at the investigation.

“Memos have gone out, it’s a witch-hunt,” Uniformed Firefighters Associated President Andrew Ansbro said.

The UFA president said FDNY brass should have addressed the behavior in the moment, and it’s what came after the ceremony, he says, has many firefighters feeling uneasy.

“Members were told they would be hunted down. It would be better for them if they came forward and identified themselves, it would be better for them. I don’t think anyone wants that to happen. If chiefs want to come forward and say they failed to supervise, they can start the line,” Ansbro said.

On Sunday, an FDNY spokesperson pushed back on the idea of a witch-hunt.

“Nobody is hunting anyone down. We’re looking into those who clearly broke department regulations. It has nothing to do with politics. It’s about professionalism at an official event held in a house of worship,” the statement said.

But the internal memo says otherwise. A note sources familiar said was sent to chief, says “members have a right to political beliefs but you don’t have a right to make a job-related ceremony political in nature.” And under next steps, deputy chiefs will be visiting fire houses that had a member promoted.

That action, Ansbro said, only adds to the mental and physical stressors of the job.

“Letitia James is a high profile guest. I think the department probably wanted to show her that they were serious about what happened. But people have been booed in the past, including the commissioner herself and nothing had ever come of that,” the union president said.

The FDNY did not provide additional comment.

Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button