EMS union: Detroit no longer covering workman's comp gap - FOX 32 News Chicago

EMS union: Detroit no longer covering workman's comp gap

Posted: Updated:
Joe Barney from Detroit's EMS union said the city is no longer covering the 20 percent workman's comp doesn't pay. Joe Barney from Detroit's EMS union said the city is no longer covering the 20 percent workman's comp doesn't pay.
DETROIT (WJBK) -

With a department already in distress, Detroit EMS has been dealt another blow.  We're told they just found out if workers get hurt on the job, they shouldn't expect the city to pay.

"We didn't know about this.  It's been instituted out of nowhere.  It's not fair," said Joe Barney, who represents Detroit's EMS workers.

He told us if his members now get injured on the job, they will no longer get paid by the city.

He just learned workers initially will be forced to use their sick time, and if they don't have it, they're out of a paycheck.

"I couldn't believe that they decided that they were not going to take care of us the way they have in the past," said Robert Reames, who has worked for EMS for five years.

He has been assaulted on the job and has had several surgeries because of work-related injuries.  He also has a very ill daughter at home.  He and his wife, Mary, don't know what they will do if he gets hurt on the job one more time.  With all of the cuts, they can barely make ends meet.

"Being that I don't have any sick time because I have to use it to take care of my family, if I get injured on the job, I go without a paycheck," Reames said.

"Now they're going to tell me they're not going to pay my husband for when he gets injured.  What is my family supposed to do?  My daughter won't be able to get prescriptions.  I won't be able to get prescriptions.  It impacts the family.  How are we going to pay our rent?  How are we going to pay our bills?" Mary Reames said.

Tim Goodman was hurt on the job and out for three months.  He said in one of the nation's most violent cities, EMS workers are assaulted or injured on the job almost every day.

"We have the highest rate of injury of any department or division citywide on a percentage basis.  I don't understand how people can sleep at night making decisions like this," he said.

Normally from the moment they are injured, police, fire and EMS workers are 100 percent covered.  Once the investigation into the injury is complete, workman's comp kicks in 80 percent of their pay and the city makes up the rest.  The same still holds true for police and fire, but the union said the city no longer covers EMS.

The pay continues to change, and Barney claimed the conditions continue to get worse.  EMS is still working with unsafe trucks, responding to often dangerous scenes where police aren't always there to back them up, and now they are being told if they are hurt, they are out of luck.

"If this is the way you're going to treat your public safety workers, then you're not going to have them.  They're leaving in droves," Barney said.

We asked the city's Risk Management Department for comment, but have not yet heard back.  Meanwhile, the Labor Relations Department told us these employees still get workman's comp.

Meanwhile, the union said they found out about the change when two workers that have been off the job because of work-related injuries stopped getting paid.

  • Taryn AsherTaryn AsherMore>>

  • Community comes together to support slain Armada teen's family

    Community comes together to support slain Armada teen's family

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:55 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:55:10 GMT
    Nearly a week after 14-year-old April Millsap was found murdered in the small town of Armada, friends, family and even those who didn't know the young girl gather for music in the park - this time hoping for justice.They were there to help raise money to ease the burden on April's heartbroken mother."We're as well as can be expected," said aunt Sarah Lichtenfelt. "They are just grateful for all the prayers and support, that's all we ask is to keep praying for strength."In the middle of it all...
    Nearly a week after 14-year-old April Millsap was found murdered in the small town of Armada, friends, family and even those who didn't know the young girl gather for music in the park - this time hoping for justice.They were there to help raise money to ease the burden on April's heartbroken mother."We're as well as can be expected," said aunt Sarah Lichtenfelt. "They are just grateful for all the prayers and support, that's all we ask is to keep praying for strength."In the middle of it all...
  • Man accused of calling taxi to move a body

    Man accused of calling taxi to move a body

    Monday, July 28 2014 10:20 PM EDT2014-07-29 02:20:50 GMT
    A mother is struggling with the fact that her 21-year-old daughter lost her battle with drug addiction, and then she learns the despicable lengths two people went to get rid of her child's body.
    A mother is struggling with the fact that her 21-year-old daughter lost her battle with drug addiction, and then she learns the despicable lengths two people went to get rid of her child's body.
  • Renisha McBride's family leaves courtroom as photos are shown

    Renisha McBride's family leaves courtroom as photos are shown

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:29 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:29:16 GMT
    On day two of the trial for Renisha McBride's shooting death, the final hours of her life and the moments after her death were detailed in court. Thursday the jury heard what Ted Wafer, her accused killer, told police about the shooting that night.  
    On day two of the trial for Renisha McBride's shooting death, the final hours of her life and the moments after her death were detailed in court. Thursday the jury heard what Ted Wafer, her accused killer, told police about the shooting that night.  

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Federal sting ends in gunfire in Highland Park

    Federal sting ends in gunfire in Highland Park

    Saturday, August 2 2014 12:03 AM EDT2014-08-02 04:03:37 GMT
    In what started as a traffic stop, resulted in a shootout between federal agents and a pair of men known to have illegal assault rifles in Highland Park.Police say a task force of ATF and FBI agents who had previously set up a meet with two men, known to have AK-47s and AR-15s in their Chevrolet Cavalier, began to move in. The traffic stop was made near Oakland and Victor about 7:30 p.m. Friday. The car rammed the federal agents vehicle and the driver opened fire with a handgun. The agents re...
    In what started as a traffic stop, resulted in a shootout between federal agents and a pair of men known to have illegal assault rifles in Highland Park.Police say a task force of ATF and FBI agents who had previously set up a meet with two men, known to have AK-47s and AR-15s in their Chevrolet Cavalier, began to move in. The traffic stop was made near Oakland and Victor about 7:30 p.m. Friday. The car rammed the federal agents vehicle and the driver opened fire with a handgun. The agents re...
  • Officer hit by drunk driver on Detroit's east side

    Officer hit by drunk driver on Detroit's east side

    Friday, August 1 2014 11:15 PM EDT2014-08-02 03:15:06 GMT
    An officer was hit by a driver believed to be drunk Friday at 8 mile and Alcoy on Detroit's east side.Police say officers were investigating at the scene of a traffic accident when the driver ran through the barricade and hit the woman.She was transported to an area hospital with non-life threatening injuries and the drunk driver was arrested. Police had been conducting an investigation of the original accident in which one of the drivers died. Eight mile is closed in east bound lane by Alcoy.
    An officer was hit by a driver believed to be drunk Friday at 8 mile and Alcoy on Detroit's east side.Police say officers were investigating at the scene of a traffic accident when the driver ran through the barricade and hit the woman.She was transported to an area hospital with non-life threatening injuries and the drunk driver was arrested. Police had been conducting an investigation of the original accident in which one of the drivers died. Eight mile is closed in east bound lane by Alcoy.
  • Man arrested after trying to wrestle gun from officer in Detroit

    Man arrested after trying to wrestle gun from officer in Detroit

    Friday, August 1 2014 9:32 PM EDT2014-08-02 01:32:44 GMT
    A man was arrested after he went for an officer's gun trying to wrestle it away from Detroit Police, causing the weapon to fire.SkyFOX was over the scene on Manning Street in Detroit, where the incident occurred Friday,The bullet didn't hit anyone and police took a 27-year-old man from Roseville into custody.Police say the home was a known drug den, and when officers drove by the property -- four people ran from the home.The officer and suspect were treated at a hospital for non life threaten...
    A man was arrested after he went for an officer's gun trying to wrestle it away from Detroit Police, causing the weapon to fire.SkyFOX was over the scene on Manning Street in Detroit, where the incident occurred Friday,The bullet didn't hit anyone and police took a 27-year-old man from Roseville into custody.Police say the home was a known drug den, and when officers drove by the property -- four people ran from the home.The officer and suspect were treated at a hospital for non life threaten...
Powered by WorldNow

205 N. Michigan Avenue
Ground Floor
Chicago, IL 60601
Station Operator: (312) 565-5532
Newsroom: (312)565-5533

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices