NEW ORLEANS – A spokesperson at City Hall released the following statement regarding NOFD overtime allowances.
“We recognize that New Orleans Firefighters are among the most dedicated and hardest working employees in our city.
As Chief McConnell acknowledged during Monday’s press conference, the department is facing staffing challenges, which creates the need for voluntary overtime.
To ensure public safety for our residents and visitors, all vacations and/or leaves are cancelled immediately until further notice. By cancelling leaves and enacting a mandatory overtime policy, it ensures more firefighters are available to respond to the community’s request for service.
The temporary directive excludes employees who have made financial vacation commitments and only requires firefighters to work their regular schedule, which averages 56 hours/week. No mandatory overtime has been ordered at this time.
In light of the boycott organized by union leaders and the influx of visitors to the city over the next several weeks, as emergency managers, it would be irresponsible for the City to not be prepared.
As long as firefighters report for work on their regularly scheduled shift, there should be no need to enact the mandatory overtime policy. The cancellation of vacation is a temporary directive. It will be rescinded as staffing increases or if firefighters agree to work voluntary overtime shifts.
PLEASE NOTE: Chief McConnell recognizes that he overlooked the 2019 recruit class of 8 individuals during Monday’s press conference. These were the last individuals on the hiring list as the staffing shortage remains.”