Union expresses opposition to proposed East Providence dispatch center move

Location would switch from police headquarters to Fire Station 3

By Mike Rego
Posted 10/28/21

EAST PROVIDENCE  — The union representing dispatchers in the city made public its opposition to a planned move of the centralized call center from its current location at police …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Not a subscriber?


Start a Subscription

Sign up to start a subscription today! Click here to see your options.

Purchase a day pass

Purchase 24 hours of website access for $2. Click here to continue

Day pass subscribers

Are you a day pass subscriber who needs to log in? Click here to continue.


Union expresses opposition to proposed East Providence dispatch center move

Location would switch from police headquarters to Fire Station 3

Posted

EAST PROVIDENCE  — The union representing dispatchers in the city made public its opposition to a planned move of the centralized call center from its current location at police headquarters to a specifically designed spot at Fire Station 3 in Rumford.

Alyssa Cadoret, speaking on behalf of United Steelworkers Union Local 15509, cited a list of concerns as she told the City Council at its October 19 meeting the bargaining unit was against the proposed change.

The administration of Mayor Bob DaSilva, with the support of the East Providence Fire Department, included the reorganization outline in his Fiscal Year 2022 budget. The mayor posited the move during the budget consideration process, in part, as being more fiscally sound, better for the safety of staff and an upgrade on coordination of personnel.

The proposal met immediate opposition from members of the council during discussions on the budget at meetings of the body in late September and early October, including Ward 4 member Ricardo Mourato, a Bristol Police officer by profession.

Mourato referred to his dissatisfaction on the matter as a reason why he voted against approval of the overall FY22 package. In sum, he questioned the legality and logistical feasibility of the move as well as a lack of financial clarity. He later expanded his remarks in a Commentary for the October 28 edition of The Post.

Cadoret made similar comments during her remarks at the October 19 meeting, saying the union had only just recently received an overview of the proposal and believed it lacked specificity.

“For the record, at this time with the information we have, our union opposes the relocation of the dispatch center,” Cadoret said.

On the claim of working conditions improving for dispatchers as a result of the move, Cadoret said the union was of the opinion achieving adequate staffing levels was more important.

Representatives of the fire department previously stated the relocation, if it were to occur, would improve performance and call times.

Cadoret said the EPFD has not provided dispatchers with any policy, procedural or training updates in the some “10 years” and that the union was not aware of any issues with productivity.

As for calls, Cadoret added 70 percent are police related, the other 30 either for fire or medical emergencies.

On call times, she said over 75 percent are dispatched meet the 60 seconds or less National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standard.

And on prioritizing the importance of medical emergency calls, an aspect highlighted by the EPFD in urging the relocation, Cadoret continued, “Our members undoubtedly have the ability and knowledge to ascertain whether it is necessary to re-route a rescue if a more serious call comes in.”

Cadoret concluded the union was “not opposed to training,” but that a “change of location is unnecessary.”

2022 by East Bay Newspapers

Barrington · Bristol · East Providence · Little Compton · Portsmouth · Tiverton · Warren · Westport
Meet our staff
Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.