Montreal Firefighters’ President Suspended for Six Months without Pay

President of Montreal’s firefighters union, Ronald Martin, was told that he has been suspended for six months without pay upon his arrival at Montreal Fire Department headquarters on Tuesday morning. The decision was reached in response to his part in the trashing of city hall on Aug. 18.

Martin took the issue of his suspension with the administration before the tribunal started looking into the events of Aug. 18 or had reached any conclusions either. Martin mentioned in his remarks, “this is a sombre day. This is the first time that a union president has been suspended while performing his union duties.” Furthermore, he added that “in Quebec the presumption of innocence has fallen again.” The president of Montreal’s executive committee announced on Oct. 2 that six firefighters would be fired and 57 other staff members, four blue collars and 46 firefighters, would be suspended between one week and six months for their part in the melee.

Regardless of the decision, Martin still warned Montreal’s Mayor Denis Coderre on Tuesday that he won’t back down and will instead continue to fight the issues. He highlighted that the issues that concern his union are pensions of city employees, firefighters, police and blue collar workers. Regardless of him being suspended, Martin still retains his position as president of the union. He added that “no one will stop me from performing my role as union president. Union action will continue, more than ever…more determined and forceful than ever.”

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