Cincinnati firefighters protest Senate Bill 5 in Columbus

 By Tiffany Teasley – bio | email

COLUMBUS, OH (FOX19) - At the forefront of the thousands who rallied at the statehouse were firefighters.

"We have a lot of members that vote republican but they're completely upset with what's going on there, and the Republicans stand to loose a lot of votes within the Cincinnati Fire Dept. because of this bill," said Cincinnati Firefighters union president Marc Monahan.
Monahan says the rank and file are frustrated, and the safety of firefighters is at stake if senate bill 5 were to pass.
"The city of Cincinnati will not longer be permitted to vote on safety items with us, which is our biggest issue, that encompasses, safety equipment, staffing, how we respond to certain runs," Monahan said.
Firefighters from Middletown, Mason and across the tri-state rallied as one Tuesday.
"Where here to ask, what's the rush and why are we pushing this through in this manner," said Mason Firefighters Union President Mark Gerano.
Gerano says lawmakers can't erase bargaining rights they've depended on for more than a decade, in a matter of weeks.
"Since 1983 was when this bill was first put in place so, in other words, 30 years of something being in place in now going to be undone in 3 to 4 weeks, that's why we have to continue to ask what the big rush is and if it's really about the fact and they really want to negotiate, this, we would challenge them to do so," Gerano said.
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