Some pissed off with the hiring course of for the brand new Md. Hearth, EMS company

By Sherry Greenfield
Baltimore solar

BALTIMORE — A number of candidates for positions within the new Carroll County Division of Hearth and Emergency Medical Companies are expressing confusion and concern over what they are saying are unfair testing necessities.

As a part of the division’s formation, all present hearth and 911 providers personnel working in Carroll County needed to apply for brand new positions with no assure of being employed.

So far, 16 lieutenants have been hired and started working for the new Carroll County Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department.

To this point, 16 lieutenants have been employed and began working for the brand new Carroll County Hearth and Emergency Medical Companies Division. (Photograph/Carroll County Hearth Division and EMS)

Some present firefighters and EMS working for volunteer departments in Carroll County say they failed the psychological testing portion of the county’s multi-step hiring course of, which additionally features a written examination, bodily means take a look at, a primary investigation and knowledgeable physicist.

This has precipitated frustration and anger amongst firefighters and EMS personnel, who argue that their years of expertise as paramedics and firefighters must be sufficient to safe them a place within the new division.

In emails to county officers, Jason Jackman, who’s a paid paramedic for the Westminster Volunteer Hearth Division, and his spouse, Nicole Jackman, who doesn’t work within the hearth division or 911, say they’ve an evaluation that weighs closely on persona and life experiences is harmful.

“As an alternative of specializing in people who’ve confirmed they will reply safely to fireplace or medical emergencies, we find yourself with those that know easy methods to reply a take a look at, a take a look at the place a lot of the questions will not be concerning the precise EMS career/ firefighters,” the Jackmans wrote.

The Jackmans and others have taken their frustration to social media, together with particular Fb pages, to air their grievances. They allege that division director Michael Robinson Sr., assured these already working at Carroll’s volunteer firms that they’d be “grandparents” and be rehired by the county for his new division.

Robinson instructed the Board of Carroll County Commissioners in February 2022 throughout discussions on the brand new Division of Hearth and EMS, that psychological testing is designed to evaluate the important job capabilities of public security personnel and predict behavioral dangers and opposed outcomes.

“We intend to emulate the method of a few of the different jurisdictions within the area, which incorporates psychological testing,” Robinson mentioned final 12 months. “They’ll have a look at areas of previous historical past and the power to carry out underneath duress. There’s a excessive diploma of accuracy to predicting success.

The county on Tuesday despatched an e mail to firefighters and paramedics who utilized for positions within the new division however failed their exams. Candidates have been instructed they must wait six months earlier than retesting, however the e mail says the division is providing a one-time alternative to retake the exams.

“The Carroll County Division of Hearth and Emergency Medical Companies is striving to ascertain one of many main methods within the state, area, and even the nation with serving and defending residents as our primary precedence,” the e-mail states. “Now we have set a excessive normal and each effort is made to not sacrifice our targets or requirements regardless of the challenges.

“As we navigate via this hiring course of for the primary time, it is pure for us to guage our processes and contemplate enhancements to our plans.”

These wishing to be reconsidered for a place as a paramedic, firefighter/paramedic, hearth tools driver or operator should register and attend a compulsory refresher session on April 10 or April 12. Coaching Middle in Westminster.

“As a reminder, it is a one-off alternative and candidates who fail the written examination once more can be topic to the six month ready interval from the date of the re-test earlier than they will re-apply for a place with [the Department of Fire and EMS]“, states the e-mail.

Jason Jackman mentioned he failed the take a look at in February and was instructed he must wait six months to retest.

Although he plans to make use of the chance to retest subsequent week, Jackman mentioned he’s nonetheless pissed off with the hiring course of, particularly the psychological testing.

“I failed the primary take a look at,” he mentioned. “The persona a part of the take a look at concerned lots of us. Principally, at this level I can return and reply the questions in opposition to my persona.”

Robinson denied a request for an interview on this matter. As an alternative the county despatched an e mail Wednesday stating that hiring for the division is an in depth, multi-step course of.

“As we embark on the hiring of our inaugural group of staff and work via the method established for the primary time, it’s pure and anticipated for the county to guage our processes,” the e-mail states. “The county, via the Division of Hearth & EMS and the Division of Human Sources, spent over a 12 months growing a hiring course of. This course of displays business requirements to incorporate a number of assessments involving an goal evaluation of candidates and validation of each their credentials and previous hearth and EMS expertise.

“The last word aim is to create a pool of the perfect certified personnel to satisfy the wants of Carroll County. That is an ongoing course of to assist our incremental staffing and deployments starting in June 2023.”

Jackman and different hearth and 911 providers personnel mentioned Robinson instructed them their jobs have been secure and they might routinely be a part of the brand new division.

“Robinson has come to everybody and mentioned to us, ‘You will not must battle to your job,'” mentioned Joel Yingling, who works as a hearth truck driver and operator for the Reese Volunteer Hearth Firm in Westminster, and mentioned he failed its first spherical of testing. “They’re dropping all these good individuals, to backdoor stuff and these silly exams.”

Nonetheless, Robinson instructed county commissioners in Might 2022 that, as a part of the event of the brand new division, all present hearth and 911 providers personnel must apply for a place with no assure of being employed as quickly as attainable. new. He additionally mentioned the specs and duties for the job may change.

The county plans to rent as much as 200 new staff for the brand new division. To this point, 16 lieutenants have been employed who began work final month. They’re now facilitating the hiring of roughly 134 further individuals from a pool of over 300 candidates.

Robinson instructed commissioners final spring that the county’s hearth and emergency wants are typically not met as a result of inconsistent staffing ranges. Robinson, who turned director on Sept. 9, is charged with the general course, administration and analysis of the brand new division and can plan, develop, implement and consider a mixed county-wide hearth and emergency system, in addition to insurance policies and procedures.

“Our aim is to offer the county 24/7 hearth and EMS protection,” Robinson mentioned final 12 months.

The push to create a mixture of paid and volunteer county hearth providers started in Carroll County greater than a decade in the past. In 2018, the Maryland Normal Meeting handed laws permitting the county to ascertain the brand new division, and in October 2020, the commissioners voted unanimously to cross an ordinance creating it.

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