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  1. #1

    NY - Woman to become NY firefighter despite failing crucial fitness test

    Woman to become NY firefighter despite failing crucial fitness test

    http://nypost.com/2015/05/03/woman-t...-fitness-test/

    The FDNY for the first time in its history will allow someone who failed its crucial physical fitness test to join the Bravest, The Post has learned.

    Rebecca Wax, 33, is set to graduate Tuesday from the Fire Academy without passing the Functional Skills Training test, a grueling obstacle course of job-related tasks performed in full gear with a limited air supply, an insider has revealed.

    “They’re going to allow the first person to graduate without passing because this administration has lowered the standard,” said the insider, who is familiar with the training.

  2. #2
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    THAT really bothers me.
    “Every day that they don’t find something is good for me.“ Billie Dunn

  3. #3
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    Everything else has been lowered so it comes as no surprise. If we're not a third-world nation already. we will be soon.

  4. #4
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    If we're a third-world nation it's because of economic policies that enrich the wealthy at the expense of the middle class, not because one woman took an extra five minutes to complete an obstacle course.

    Katy, the article does seem alarming, but one must consider the source. The New York Post is the Fox News of daily newspapers. It isn't known for nuance (most famous headline: "HEADLESS BODY IN TOPLESS BAR"); but the sky is always falling at its headquarters.

    The whole story may be more complex. I doubt everyone at the FDNY performs the same tasks. Perhaps her superior intelligence and academic aptitude may be put to uses just as important as carrying hose up six flights of stairs. "One test fits all applicants" is a rather 19th century concept.

    Fires are unforgiving. Unfortunately, if she is truly being placed in a job she can't do, we're apt to find out all too soon from the ensuing tragedy.

  5. #5
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    Nova "superior intelligence"? Are you serious? No one with even average intelligence would take a job as a fireman knowing full well that the other guys/gals in the firehouse will scorn them (unless of course the plan is to sue the city for some sort of work place harassment in the future).

    Next thing will be hiring handicapped firemen, after all folks in wheelchairs should be able to realize their dreams too! They should not be penalized simply because they have a disability!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by katydid23 View Post
    THAT really bothers me.
    Me too. This lowering of standards is putting everyone else at risk, the other firefighters and those they are trying to save.

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    This wanna-be firewoman sounds like a lawsuit waiting to happen. Most dept calls are life/death situations. If you're not up to the task because you don't have the skills for it, might mean someone could die. AND, she'll get the same pay as the fireman who DOES have the skills. That should go over well with the whole department.

    Don't get me wrong, I have no problems with a woman being a firefighter BUT only if they can do the same job the rest of the crew can do. There's a reason why those tests are so rigorous and not changed for many years. The reason this woman took that test was to be a FIREMAN not for some light duty job within a dept, otherwise she would not have to have taken the test in the first place.
    MOO and stuff

  8. #8
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    It's a very physically demanding test. They have to be able to carry a large amount of weight, etc. The test is clearly not designed for a female.
    Most women can't physically compete with men (which is why men and women compete separately in sports).
    So if they want more female firefighters, they have to lower the standard.
    Just my opinion

  9. #9
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    Sometimes common sense should prevail...

    Moo
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    This post reflects my constitutionally-protected opinion. Please do not copy it anywhere else outside of the WebSleuth forum

  10. #10
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    Excuse me ......why would firefighters need to lower the standards of becoming firefighters so women can get into the field?? If a woman isn't capable of doing the same job the other firemen are doing, why is she there? I would hate to have to put my life on the line in a burning building because of it, how about you? Personally, I would rather have a COMPETENT fireman helping me out of a fire than one with limited skills.
    MOO and stuff


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solitaryone View Post
    Me too. This lowering of standards is putting everyone else at risk, the other firefighters and those they are trying to save.
    The key word in that sentence is "else." It puts everyone else at risk. The women who failed the test will be working alongside firemen who passed the test and who are fully capable of carrying her out of a burning building should she be injured.

    But she will be unable to carry out the other firemen, or to carry out people inside who are injured or unconscious from the smoke.
    JMO. MOO.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sonjay View Post
    The key word in that sentence is "else." It puts everyone else at risk. The women who failed the test will be working alongside firemen who passed the test and who are fully capable of carrying her out of a burning building should she be injured.

    But she will be unable to carry out the other firemen, or to carry out people inside who are injured or unconscious from the smoke.
    Very bad situation, and a very frightening one.

  13. #13
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    Why on earth would she WANT this job if she is not physically fit to fulfill it safely? Boggles my mind. She is putting her own life and the lives of many others at risk. What's the point of this grueling test if they make concessions? This is b.s. IMO
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  14. #14
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    You ALL, as well as the POST, are talking as if every firefighter does the same job. I doubt that is the case.

    Assuming this woman can't be the one who carries a 300-pound man down from the third floor, that doesn't mean she can't be the one who carries the fire extinguisher up to the blaze. (There was a rerun of LAW & ORDER the other day where they went through the tasks of a team that enters a burning building: IIRC, there were at least four separate jobs requiring different levels of physical ability among the members of a six-person team.)

    And who is to say she will even be inside a building? Maybe her job will be attaching the hose to the hydrant or operating the "cherry picker".

    The point is many professions are rethinking these "tests" and other rites of passage that are basically hazing rituals unnecessary to ably do the job. I'm guessing firefighting has changed considerably since the test was designed.

    EVERY team consists of individuals with varying abilities, and a good supervisor assigns tasks with these variations in mind. That one member of the team lacks the upper body strength of some others (and who says all male firefighters have maintained the strength they had when they passed the test?) doesn't mean the team can't excel as a whole or that public safety has been sacrificed.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nova View Post
    You ALL, as well as the POST, are talking as if every firefighter does the same job. I doubt that is the case.

    Assuming this woman can't be the one who carries a 300-pound man down from the third floor, that doesn't mean she can't be the one who carries the fire extinguisher up to the blaze. (There was a rerun of LAW & ORDER the other day where they went through the tasks of a team that enters a burning building: IIRC, there were at least four separate jobs requiring different levels of physical ability among the members of a six-person team.)

    And who is to say she will even be inside a building? Maybe her job will be attaching the hose to the hydrant or operating the "cherry picker".

    The point is many professions are rethinking these "tests" and other rites of passage that are basically hazing rituals unnecessary to ably do the job. I'm guessing firefighting has changed considerably since the test was designed.

    EVERY team consists of individuals with varying abilities, and a good supervisor assigns tasks with these variations in mind. That one member of the team lacks the upper body strength of some others (and who says all male firefighters have maintained the strength they had when they passed the test?) doesn't mean the team can't excel as a whole or that public safety has been sacrificed.
    So she can be the designated fire extinguisher chick. Cool.

    I always thought that every firefighter was supposed to be capable of performing all of the possible things that firefighters might have to do at the scene of a fire, but I guess it's great if they want to designate different classes of firefighting. A fire extinguisher class. A hose hydrant connector class. A cherry picker operator class. And a class that actually goes into burning buildings and carries out unconscious people. For large departments that have enough firefighters, that might work, sure. It would make scheduling shifts more complicated, but I see no reason not to do it that way.

    I wonder if it would be objectionable if the "go into burning buildings and save people" group got extra pay for hazardous duty.
    JMO. MOO.

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