At our Labor/Management meetings Rumor Control is always an agenda item, but at our last meeting more myths and rumors were embedded throughout the meeting than normal. To set the record straight here are two that we discussed:
On Call, Standby and Work Schedules: The Department of Forestry suppresses wildfires and when a fire starts outside of the normal workweek ODF’s trained and able firefighters need to be located. In our contract Article 90.3C Work Schedules (Forestry) contains specific language about this. In Section 3 On Call, supervisors can require employees to provide their general location and how they can be reached. There is no restriction on how the employee can use their time so there is no On Call or Standby pay. There is a similar arrangement for lunch in Section 4, where employees required not to leave their duty station during lunch but not required to continue working are not paid for this time. Standby and On-Call Duty (Article 34) are options available to management when the employee is required to be available for work and there would be restrictions on what the employee can do in their off time.
Personnel from Human Resources at the Incident Command Post: The Incident Commander is the designated human resources point person, just like it has been. A staff member from the Human Resources section was assigned to the Douglas Complex to assist with the rest and rotation schedule. If you see someone from Human Resources and they are not too busy stop and say hi, they are probably a long way from home.
A more complete rendering of the discussion around these two items will be in the meeting minutes, but thought it would be important to get it out quickly now that fire season is underway in some parts of Oregon.