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Fired firefighters: Mayor issues statement to say he won't say anything

Council to meet again Oct. 17 to discuss displinary action against 11 volunteer firefighters
Mayor Brian Bigger. (File)

Mayor Brian Bigger issued a statement this morning to say he woldn't be commenting on the case of the 11 disciplined volunteer firefighters.

It was a reiteration of what the mayor told the media last night after a raucous and at times heated three-hour closed door meeting regarding the 11 volunteer firefighters who were disciplined last week for, apparently, expressing their opinions about the fire optimization plan drafted, and abandoned, by the city before the summer.

Today, Bigger issued the following statement: 

"Council has met relating to disciplinary action in the Community Safety Department and requested more information from staff. Council will be meeting again on October 17, 2017 to discuss this matter in more detail. At this time, I cannot comment further regarding the discussion in the closed meeting."

We know three of those 11 volunteers were terminated. We don't know what form of disciplinary action was taken against the remaining eight firefighters.

What's more, the city hasn't explicitly stated why the volunteer firefighters were disciplined. 

Two councillors, Ward 5's Bob Kirwan and Ward 2's Michael Vagnini, and the volunteer firefighters union, CLAC Local 920, have stated it seems the firefighters contravened a provision in the municipality's employee handbook that requires city staff to remain apolitical and not express opinions regarding issues that are before council.

The city has not said this is the case, however.

As well, if it is a case were employee guidelines were broken, the city hasn't said why these 11 people were disciplined six months after they apparently broke the rules.