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S.F. has declared all public employees are DISASTER SERVICE WORKERS!! Help

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laugle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:32 PM
Original message
S.F. has declared all public employees are DISASTER SERVICE WORKERS!! Help
My husband works for the City of San Francisco. All public employees of the City were notified today that pursuant to; California Government Code Section 3.100et.seq, all public employees are considered DISASTER SERVICE WORKERS.

The memo came from the Executive Director, City and County of S.F., Office of emergency services and Homeland Securtity.

Memo states that at any time during a catastrophic event, which places life or property in jeopardy, you could be assigned to disaster service activity that promotes the protection of public health and safety.

PLEASE TELL ME IF THIS IS HAPPENING IN YOUR CITY. IT'S VERY DISTURBING.

It sounds like, because of what happened in NOLA, i.e., not enough national guard, etc., they are seeking to draft public employees to handle disasters.

I would appreciate your info or comments on this. Thank you DUers.
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savemefromdumbya Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:33 PM
Response to Original message
1. oh oh plamegate - goldengate nt
nt
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ayeshahaqqiqa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:34 PM
Response to Original message
2. My first thought was
that this was a subtle form of union busting. If any municipal workers have a union and walk out, they could be fined or fired if they didn't come to work because AHnold would declare a state of emergency so that he would "need" disaster relief workers.
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TallahasseeGrannie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:37 PM
Response to Original message
3. I'm conflicted about this concept
As a teacher we have plans to house children in our school for long periods of time in case of emergency.

I feel a level of responsibility for those children, but I have personal responsibilties at home. It's hard.
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laugle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:46 PM
Response to Reply #3
9. The first thing my husband said was F--k them I have
my own family to protect. And your situation is quite different as you would simply stay put until the children are safe and return to your own home.
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TallahasseeGrannie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:55 PM
Response to Reply #9
12. You are righ
my situation is different, but I would rather go home and tend to my family.

I think that in N.O., this was a decision a lot of the cops had to make. I won't criticize them for choosing their families, either. Altruism is fine, but when it comes down to it you take care of your own.
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Coastie for Truth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:37 PM
Response to Original message
4. Google "Disaster Service Worker" in the California Code
it has to do with accessing a bigger pot (deeper pockets) of "Workers Comp" and "Life Insurance" money.
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don954 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:40 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. Also FEMA money
civil service workers cant be paid with FEMA money, hense the problems NO LA is having. "Disaster Service Workers", can, however.
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merh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:40 PM
Response to Original message
5. It happens all the time in disaster prone areas.
City employees (especially public works) are part of the disaster management team.

When I worked for the County, I was part of the Emergency operations team, I lived at the EOC during and after storms, helping with communications, etc.

BTW -- I live in Biloxi, MS, city and county workers have always been a part of the disaster assistance teams. It's their city/county, they do what they have to do to save it or get it back up and running. They have a personal interest as well as a financial interest. (If city is not up and running after a disaster, how the hell are the employees going to be paid?)

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Coastie for Truth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:44 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. My wife is a social worker (with the elderly)
and when she got designated as a "Disaster Service Worker" our kids bought her a children's red fire fighter helmet and a kitchen CO2 fire extinguisher.
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merh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:48 PM
Response to Reply #8
10. I am sure that is more equipment than the city/county gave her.
I bet she laughed so hard :rofl: - sounds like you have great kids.

:hi:
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laugle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:55 PM
Response to Reply #5
13. Merh, what kinds of things were you asked to do,
and were you all trained accordingly?
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merh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 08:35 AM
Response to Reply #13
20. I was one of the ones that took phone calls from folks questioning
how to prepare for storms, get their homes ready and the locations of shelters. No training, except seat of the pants, do what you have to do to keep things going and folks informed or calmed.

Public works employees in the cities along the coast have been the ones responsible for checking homes for victims, clearing debris, inspecting homes to determine whether or not they can be occupied, mapping the devasation, etc.

Again, as far as I know, the training comes as the jobs are being done. It is do what has to be done to keep the city alive and to help the citizens.

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laugle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 03:20 PM
Response to Reply #20
22. Well guess what my husbands brother works for public works,
oh well.....it sounds pretty chaotic.
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merh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 04:18 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. It usually is very chaotic before, during & after a disaster.
The flip side is, the city/county workers and their families get first choice of the items donated by the various groups from around the nation. They get the water, the ice, the baby food, the diapers, the MREs, etc first.

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merh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #13
21. Oh, I meant to mention, before 9/11 and Homeland Security issues
it was called "Civil Defense". Go back and check the history of Civil Defense in your community. I am sure you will find that county/city employees were a part of that structure for years.

:hi:

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Demobrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:43 PM
Response to Original message
7. Why does this bother you so much?
If my company told me that I would be considered a disaster service worker in case of a disaster, I don't think I would mind too much. Better to help clean up on company time than sit in my cube as usual.

But I don't know what your husband does. Maybe being at his regular job is more important.

I live in SF too, BTW, and was here for the last earthquake. My company made me come in to work as usual as soon as the power was on. I would rather have been helping the victims in some way.
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laugle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:53 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. What bothers me is being asked to do something,
Edited on Wed Oct-19-05 05:53 PM by laugle
that may be highly dangerous and these workers are not skilled or trained accordingly.
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Demobrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:58 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. That makes sense.
I would like to say that that would never happen, but I suppose that's dumb. Anything can happen, and I don't have that much confidence in pretty-boy Newsom. He's good at photo ops and grandstand plays, but aside from that I'm not all that impressed.
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Coastie for Truth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:13 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. Before I retired my employer designated a bunch of us
as disaster service workers.

Training:
    a) First Aid for Dummies (how not to make things worse)
    b) Automatic Electronic Defibrillator
    c) How to Report An Emergency (nature of the emergency, building, floor, wing, cube)
    d) Common sense stuff (where the breakers are, etc.)
    e) Floor evacuation procedures
      Look out for older, and handicapped workers
    f) What to do if the telephone system goes down.


Duties:
    a) Evacuate 16 colleagues w/ various fire escapes blocked.
    b) Simple first aid (pressure bandage instead of a tourniquet; don't try to move anybody -- head, neck, spinal injuries)
    c) Kill the breakers to the copier, etc.
    d) Designated "runners" and "shadows" and "messengers" and "supernumeraries"
    e) DON'T BE A HERO!!

Really just post-9/11 common sense.
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laugle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:15 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. My husband tends to be the hero type that cares
deeply about people. He is a very kind person who is not good at saying "NO". He has worked for the city for 18 years and this is the first we have ever heard of this, so we were both alarmed.

I guess if we were living in normal times, we would not be sooo paranoid. But with the current climate, of seeming like our government finds that all of us are expendable, we are wondering what next is in store...

We all know that most of our current resources in money and military are in Iraq.

The NOLA disaster showed that our government is not prepared.
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Demobrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:21 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. Since I live here I have to admit
I like the idea of city employees being trained for rescue work.

Especially considering I have absolutely no doubt that Bushco would love to see the entire penninsula fall into the ocean.
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laugle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:35 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. He is trained in NERT (neighborhood emergency response) but
I guess it's just the tone of the memo makes it sound like you will do what we tell you or lose your job. (As my husband calls it "the gestapo).
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Demobrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:40 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. Well, some city employees were told they had to campaign for Newsom
or lose their jobs, so I don't doubt your take at all.

Still...a hero type trained in rescue work....I'm sure you can understand why I like the idea.
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