Members of Stamford, CT Local 786 have overwhelmingly ratified a new union contract with the City of Stamford. The vote, which concluded on Thursday, August 4, drew a record turnout from Local 786’s membership.
The eight-year accord reached in July, under the administration of Stamford Mayor David Martin, was approved by 78 percent of the city’s professional fire fighters. With 259 votes cast – 95 percent of the membership – it was the highest voter turnout in the union’s history.
The long-awaited labor agreement, which now goes to the Stamford Board of Representatives for a vote on Monday, includes a 16.25 percent pay increase spread out over the eight-year life of the contract. Stamford fire fighters had worked without a contract for nearly six years.
Stamford is the third largest city in Connecticut, with an estimated population of 128,874, a five percent increase from 2010, when the previous contract expired.
“I am very pleased that my fellow fire fighters came together to provide such a ringing endorsement for this contract, which increases wages, offers strong job protections and provides the support required to continue to protect the safety of the citizens of Stamford,” said President of Local 786 Brendan Keatley. “This city deserves professional, highly trained fire fighters working at full capacity to protect lives and property. We thank the mayor and his leadership team for working to resolve this in the best interests of the entire city.”
The contract also increases staff levels from 52 to 54 professional fire fighters on duty at any time. This will result in better coverage throughout the city, particularly for the people of North Stamford.
The contract runs retroactively from 2011 to 2018. In addition, fire fighters will receive new uniforms after safety concerns were raised about the current uniforms.