The IAFF is a co-sponsor of the Congressional Fire Services Institute’s (CSFI) first dinner in Washington, DC. President George H.W. Bush and Vice President Dan Quayle, along with more than 100 members of Congress, join with more than 2,000 guests to pay homage to the fire service. President Bush pledges support to fire fighters.
The U.S. Supreme Court opens the door for white workers to challenge affirmative action settlements by a vote of 5-4.
U.S. Representative Curt Weldon of Pennsylvania forms the Congressional Fire Services Caucus to direct Congress’ attention to the fire problem in America. According to Weldon, insensitivity to fire safety issues in government and among the public at large has given America the “biggest fire problem of any industrialized nation, and a dwindling level of recruitment into the fire service to tackle the growing crisis.”
The IAFF testifies in support of the Hotel/Motel Fire Safety Act of 1989, H.R. 94, which will require the installation of sprinkler systems and smoke detectors in hotels and motels.
Executive Assistant to the President Harold Schaitberger testifies before the House Ways and Means Committee on behalf of the IAFF in opposition to mandatory Medicare coverage for currently non-covered employees of state and municipal governments.
The IAFF Department of Governmental and Political Affairs undergoes a thorough review designed to ensure its continued effectiveness on Capitol Hill and to prepare detailed plans for the implementation of its current legislative program. The IAFF issues the first edition of a new legislative newsletter, “Capitol Alert,” to be published every two weeks while Congress is in session and mailed to the presidents of all U.S. affiliates for posting on firehouse bulletin boards.
The IAFF is notified by OSHA that officials of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) are insisting that OSHA exclude state and local emergency response employees from the OSHA safety standard of hazardous materials due to be promulgated soon.
“What took place in Kansas City can take place in nearly every community in America. As a nation, we must recognize our inability or unwillingness to deal with the problems associated with fighting hazardous materials accidents. We must further recognize that the cost of ignoring the problem is paid in tragedies like that which took the lives of six dedicated fire fighters in Kansas City.”Al Whitehead, IAFF General President (1988-2000)
The IAFF’s “1987 Annual Death and Injury Survey” reveals that work-related death rates among fire fighters have increased by 6 percent since 1986, despite no change in death rates for other high-risk occupations.
The IAFF joins forces with the American Furniture Manufacturers Association to urge passage of legislation to require flameproof furniture in hotels and motels, nursing homes, day care centers, hospitals and other high-risk residences.
According to the National Council on Compensation, stress claims account for approximately 14 percent of occupational disease claims, up from five percent in 1980.
IAFF President Al Whitehead and Secretary-Treasurer Vinnie Bollon embark on “Operation Outreach,” a 13-city tour to hear from fire fighters about their problems and listen to possible suggestions on how the International can be more effective to the members it serves.
IAFF affiliates raise $6 million for the Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon.
Three Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, fire fighters are killed when they are hit by a flashover at a residential fire.
Two Orange County, Florida, fire fighters are killed when an explosion occurs as they are fighting a blaze near a gift shop at Walt Disney World village.
The IAFF Executive Board establishes a permanent IAFF Reward Fund to pledge rewards to individuals who provide information that leads to the apprehension and conviction of persons responsible for major arson incidents that cause the death of IAFF members.
The International Fire Fighter’s annual subscription rate for non-IAFF members increases to $18, the first increase since 1974.
The wage differential between union and non-union members continues to grow. In 1989, full-time wage and salary employees who are union members had a median earning of $480 per week ($24,960 per year) compared with $356 ($18,512 per year) for those who are not union members, a $6,448 difference.
The IAFF offers several publications to affiliates, including Managing the Entry of Women in the Fire Service, Pregnancy and Collective Bargaining and Promotion Practices in the Fire Service.
The second phase of the IAFF Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial dedication takes place in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The Wall of Honor is inscribed with the names of more than 800 U.S. and Canadian fire fighters who died in the line of duty over the years. Nearly 750 fire fighters and their families, IAFF officers and others attend the events.
The Public Safety Officers’ Benefits (PSOB) program is upgraded to reflect the rise in the consumer price index. Effective October 1, 1989, the current benefit of $103,890 will be increased approximately 5.4 percent to $109,460.