We have a couple of guys that moved on to be Career Firefighters, why does their attitude change? They are still on the Volunteer Dept but the dedication is completely gone, this makes me mad as hell, if it werent for the Vol. Dept they would not even be where they are today, we paid for their EMS trianing and their FF1 and FF2, as soon as they start getting paid they are better than the rest of us, they even go as far as threatening to quite saying "I dont need this" or this "this place is a joke" I am not an officer so I just keep my mouth shut I would like to tell them to turn in their stuff cuase they have a bad attitude.

Does anyone else see the same thing??
How would you go about dealing with it?


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Chris, Its about the individuals. Tons of volunteers strive to get paid for pursuing their passion. Many achieve it. If that success causes them to forget who they were and to forget thier "humble beginnings", then hes a certifiable dingbat. I have shared a lot of mutual respect with a ton of people on both side of this isle from long before I had the Chaplain advantage. A rotten attitude in any community service is a diservice to that community. Get him some help.
I really think this kinda thread needs to stop. Also just in case you forgot, Fire dosen't discriminate wether your a career firefighter or a volunteer. Play nice and be safe.
it sounds like this is a well worn out topic
i feel there will always be a attitude difference between paid and vollys that can be a good thing and a bad thing.
it all depends on the testosterone of all involved i believe a level of understanding is needed between the 2 sides on the volly side the paid guys train clean work live and breath it all the time and more than likely at a higher level of discipline and experience. and from the paid to the voly side they more than likely struggle for funds and equipment and the time to commit to the fire station but their hearts and minds are in the right place
and then from both sides they are fiercely proud of what the do and achieve and will take umbrage of anything said against them or their station this i feel is especially keenly felt by the vollys
we have a few guys that did the same thing with us. i just wounder what is going through their heads. we have this one thats been on the dept. and is a career firefighter for a long time and he doesnt act like the new career ones. i'm glad that they found a career job. if they dont want to vol. any more they should turn their gear in.

" these guys are very knowledgable and are a great resource to the dept"


If they say the department is a "joke" it most likely is.



Yes I have a firefighter on my dept that has done this hes moved on to a paid dept. and paid ems and has completly stopped making runs with us.

You should be happy that the volunteers have found a paid position within the organization and leave it at that.  Why do they need to volunteer as well?  Do you expect them to be at the beck and call of the siren?  I am a volunteer and proud of it, but I would never look at a career FF and say well if you don't want to volunteer any more then turn your gear in....  I would be looked at like I had completely lost what marbles I have remaining.....

So is he supposed to spend 100% of his life in a fire house?  If I'm running over 20 runs in one tour at my career house, I want to go home and sleep/spend time with family/get something else done. Why would I want to go straight to the volly house and stay there until my next tour of duty?

Ah yes....gotta love some of the necroposting to a 2 1/2 year old thread....



Yes I have a firefighter on my dept that has done this hes moved on to a paid dept. and paid ems and has completly stopped making runs with us.


Sounds like he moved to a different dept, are you saying they should still be responding with you? Do you understand the difficulties that also may be involved and limiting additional responses or even if the other dept allows it?



You know, i read several of the responses here and this is nothing more than another C vs V. I started as a volunteer FF and I disagree with some of the sentiment here. Two and a half years later the same discussion gets brought up and there are still some responses said 2 1/2 years ago. Instead of worrying about the little world of one's own ego, it helps to look at the bigger picture too.


For those combo depts where you get a volunteer becoming paid, there can be several differing factors at play. Being in a paid position, you now fall into labor laws, fair labor practices, OT issues, compensations and so forth. This means it isn't always practical for a FT FF to come in and be around like they could as a volunteer. They can't make all trainings with volunteers without now receiving either comp time or OT at time and half, as opposed to the compensation a volly may get. This affects the budgets and bottom line overall.


For those former volunteers who move on to other depts.......guess what, THEY ARE GONE. If you don't agree with the fact they no longer volunteer, so what, nothing you can do. If you believe their attitude has changed....so what, not your problem. If you believe your volly dept should be "entitled" to some type of compensation because (if) they paid for the person's training, well then there should be something in place.


Now when it comes down to even a FT volunteering it completely depends on many factors. Just like volunteers with their FT jobs and so forth, the same factors involve those FT FF's. Even if the FF works a 24 hour shift, doesn't mean they have all this time off to volunteer. Some do and can, for many other people life gets in the way. Many still have families, other hobbies or even other jobs to help supplement an income that typically starts quite low for a new FF....since most places have you work a few years before making top FF pay. (something rarely mentioned here) Another aspect is there may be residency rules making it more difficult to make responses.


Then there are the committments asked for from a volly dept because training records, response committments, etc are still accounted for. For some folks they may become more involved with their career dept thus limiting time to volunteer. Some may be more involved with specialty teams, working with a union (if there is one), working on college degree or studying for advancement etc. Point being there may be many different reasons as to why a paid no longer volunteers and typically it isn't about "looking down" on vollies as some may perceive. Another factor is the training.....Face it some training is better than others and there are some mandatory trainings like WMD, HAZMAT, exposure control etc that are to be done despite if it is a career or volly dept. It can get pretty old to go through training with the FT dept and sit through the same training with a volly.


In the end there are plenty reason why you don't see the time commitment to a volly dept after one becomes career. While initially one may intend full well to stay involved, intentions don't always pan out and many times the issue with perception isn't because of some attitude change etc. Many times the issue with perception starts with the reflection in the mirror.

I agree with the individual who stated that fire doesn't descriminate whether your paid or volunteer. Since the age of 18, I began my career as a volunteer firefighter for the next 26 years until my department hired me as its second safety/training officer. We are ALL PROFESSIONALS, the difference is whether you look at this calling as a passion or just merely a job. Recently, I just completed a NFPA 1021 course along with others all from fully paid departments. On the first night I sat back and listened to different obstacles we had to overcome in our departments. Just before it was my time to speak I came to realize that their problems were the same as ours. Actually one of the guys said it best " Same clowns, just a different circus". Just think if we all worked as one, and posts like this weren't necessary, what aloud voice we would have and imagine what we could accomplish!
Im a volunteer and I've seen the same thing happen in our department. The best thing to do is to tell them to leave because theire attitude will bring the moral down in the firehouse and department, they will stop helping with different functions that may happen around the fire department, they will set a bad example for the new people being recruited into the department and they wont listen to anybody or IC. cause they think they know everything and also they will be the first to get hurt on a scene.

It might depend on the area where you would be. My area it would be more volunteer vs union not the career firefighter.

Union considers the volunteers the enemy to hiring of emergency personnel and will tell their members after being hired. The county trains them but the union tells them to not like the other side of the dept.

 I use to work with career members for years with no problems but as years went by things changed with new career personnel coming in.

 I have know some volunteers that joined the career service in the county and they changed over night and never talk to friends or even family members that were volunteers afterwards. 

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