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Wittman, Sarbanes Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Improve Federal Firefighters’ Work-Life Balance

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Washington, March 16, 2017 | comments
Federal Firefighter Flexibility and Fairness Act Would Allow Federal Firefighters to Change Shifts Without Losing Pay

WASHINGTON – Congressmen Rob Wittman (R-Va.) and John Sarbanes (D-Md.) today introduced Federal Firefighter Flexibility and Fairness Act (H.R. 1363), a bipartisan bill that would give federal firefighters more workplace flexibility.

The bill would fix a longstanding disparity between federal firefighters and professional firefighters employed by states, counties or municipalities – who often work side by side. Unlike their professional counterparts, federal firefighters have a more stringent work schedule and cannot swap their shifts without losing pay. The Federal Firefighter Flexibility and Fairness Act would correct this problem by allowing federal firefighters to trade shifts – with the approval of their supervisors – without forfeiting pay.

Our federal firefighters render invaluable service in our parks, on federal lands and military bases, and in our communities," Rep. Wittman said. "Like their professional firefighter counterparts, the stresses and demands of the job often make it difficult for federal firefighters to balance their home life and work life. It's time that changed. I am pleased to join with Congressman Sarbanes in introducing this bill to allow federal firefighters to trade shifts without losing pay, thus providing them a healthy work-life balance. For all they do for us, this is the least we can do for them.”

“Our nation’s federal firefighters put their lives on the line every single day to protect our communities and ensure the safety of residents,” said Congressman Sarbanes. “These brave men and women deserve a healthy and flexible work-life balance that affords them the ability to adjust their work schedules without losing pay.”

For more information about the Federal Firefighter Flexibility and Fairness Act, visit: http://www.iaff.org/politics/legislative/TradeTime.htm.

Congressman Rob Wittman represents the 1st District of Virginia. He serves on the House Natural Resources Committee and the House Armed Services Committee, where he is Chairman of the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee.

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