What are the employment laws regarding training for first responders?

About 2 months ago, I joined my local fire department as a volunteer firefighter. I told my employer and let them know my availability starting next month since I will be going to fire academy. The academy will be every Wednesday night which I have to have off anyway as I work at 2:30 am Tursday morning and every other weekend. It starts next month and ends 6 months later. I am one of 4 Leaders/Manager at my work and today I was told that the DM has said that Leaders shouldn’t have schedule restrictions and that if I wanted to do fire academy, I would have to step down into a lower position. Is it legal for them to do that? They didn’t have a problem when I asked to have Friday nights off this fall so I could watch my son’s football games.

Asked on December 2, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Oregon

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Does this policy change violate the terms of an employment contract or union agreement? Does it constitute some form of actionable discrimination? If not, then you have no claim here. The fact is that a company can set the conditions of the workplace much as it sees fit. This means that you can be demoted (or even terminated) with or without notice for any reason or no reason at all.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Does this policy change violate the terms of an employment contract or union agreement? Does it constitute some form of actionable discrimination? If not, then you have no claim here. The fact is that a company can set the conditions of the workplace much as it sees fit. This means that you can be demoted (or even terminated) with or without notice for any reason or no reason at all. 


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