An article in the leadership section of the nation motivated me to write on this subject because the fire chief in the article is taking some heat for "not being a brother" and defending one of his members. Incendiary fires started by firefighters occurs every so often for a variety if reasons but the aftermath may be worse for the department.
This chief officer is suffering a divided department and social isolation from members who think he was wrong for not standing up for the accused firefighter because some thought he was not capable of doing it. even after the evidence was available for them to see
I have to stand with the chief for doing what he did BECAUSE IT WAS RIGHT to make sure that the guilty ex-firefighter was sent to prison
But what about the department?
What about the loss of public trust at the hands on one member?
What will the department do to restore public trust?
From my own experience there was a member of an arson task force member who was convicted for setting fires. I didn't care why he did it because I was more embarrassed to be associated with the task force at that time and wondered how it would effect us in the future. We work with local law enforcement, state fire marshal and federal agencies and all I could think of was what "they" would think of us from now on.
The agency's we interfaced with let it go after a while but I could sense a change in their outlook on us and I took a few years to recover our image
Do any of you have an in house plan for dealing with arsonist firefighters?
Have any of you had an arsonist firefighter and how did you or your department handle it