Fox Guards Hen House
In the current issue of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) magazine, Fire Fighter, General President Harold Schaitberger remarks, ” I say it a lot — nothing is more important than the health and safety of our members.”
He may say it a lot but he can hardly mean it.
Schaitberger has proven again and again he isn’t really serious about forceful advocacy around the issue he says is most important.
Forceful advocacy would mean maintaining a strict arm’s length from manufacturers so that we would always be able to criticize freely to protect our members.
Schaitberger’s IAFF is in bed with these folks, covers pulled right up to the chin and safety suffers because of it.
Counter-Example: Boeing, ALPA and Flight Attendants
You don’t have to look far or closely to see how real unions protect their members by refusing to be in the pocket of manufacturers.
Neither offers any advertisement for aviation products, leaving them free to protect their members by speaking freely when safety is a concern.
The same cannot be said for the IAFF site or our magazine.
Schaitberger ignores the simple fact that accepting an advertisement by a membership organization is an effective endorsement; it presents an immediate and substantive conflict of interest.
Take one dime and credibility is forfeited.
The current magazine is theoretically dedicated to occupational cancer but the soup is pretty thin, as it is chock full ads.
Among the 17 advertisements in the magazine, five are for protective equipment.
Since it is now recognized that there is a relationship between toxic exposure and protective equipment, our union should not be taking money from these manufacturers in order to ensure that we fight for the best products and protection.
Schaitberger is blind to this simple fact as he is solely motivated by money; anybody who shakes down sick kids a nickel at a time could care less about firefighter health.
Shady Schait Sells Us Out
The Airline Pilots and Flight Attendants don’t take advertising money from Boeing because their mission would be compromised if they did.
How hard is that to understand?
Answer: not very.
The IAFF, under president-for-life Harold Schaitberger, has completely lost its edge as an aggressive union with a mission to protect members.
Schaitberger has always been about the next deal, beginning with his lunatic idea to provide funeral services to us in order to benefit one of his cronies.
That fell through, but he is killing the IAFF just the same.