Black Firefighters Want US Review Of Chicago Fire Department

CHICAGO, IL – A group of black Chicago firefighters is asking for a federal investigation into the operations of the city’s fire department.

African American Firefighters & Paramedics League founder James Winbush says Commissioner Jose Santiago has turned a deaf ear to concerns the department doesn’t hire enough African-American firefighters. He says Santiago should be dismissed, adding efforts to address the lagging number of black firefighters has been going on for five years with no results.

The firefighters group’s president, fire Lt. Gregory Boggs, noted that part of a 1980 agreement a firefighters strike requires that 30 percent of all firefighters in each rank be African-American.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel says he and Santiago have taken a leadership role in cleaning up a fire department with a long and documented history of discrimination.

From The Associated Press via The Albany Times Union

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