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Ontario Professional Fire Fighters Association - St. Catharines Professional Firefighters, IAFF Local 485

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Ontario Professional Fire Fighters Association

The Ontario Professional Fire Fighters Association represents 80 Locals representing over 11,000 professional fire fighters.

The Ontario Professional Fire Fighters Association (OPFFA) is affiliated with the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) and the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL). Our locals, through the IAFF, are affiliated with the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), and the American Federation of Labour-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO).

The OPFFA has evolved into an organization whose primary purpose is to provide career fire fighters with the highest level of service and expertise to assist them in all aspects of their professional lives.

This service comes in the form of research, distribution of information, and representation at all government levels. 'Hands on' assistance is provided through representation at the local level with local problems - negotiations, grievances, workplace safety insurance, health and safety, pensions and in educating fire fighters to prepare for effective collective bargaining and the administration of their collective agreements.

To provide service to our 76 Locals requires money. Our revenue is raised by a monthly per capita tax on our members. The amount of per capita is determined by the members attending our annual convention.

In recognition of the benefits of belonging in the "House of Labour" and in our support of union solidarity the OPFFA is a member of the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL). As a result, a portion of the monthly per capita remitted to the OPFFA is forwarded to the OFL on every member's behalf thereby affiliating all members with the OFL.

We have three full-time staff who work in our office to assure that the information being provided to our members is both timely and accurate.

Our Executive Board members are available upon request to provide advice and direct representation in negotiations, grievances, presentations to council and the like.

For specific issue advice (i.e. Health and Safety, WSIB, Pensions) the OPFFA has a number of members who serve on standing committees to assist our members with these concerns.


O.P.F.F.A. website

 

History of the O.P.F.F.A.

Representing professional fire fighters in Ontario is not new. Our parent body, the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) was formed in 1918, with the first provincial organization created in 1920, known as the Provincial Federation of Ontario Fire Fighters (PFOFF).

In 1984, a dispute with the IAFF fashioned a division of ideals. This division saw many Locals choosing to withdraw from the IAFF in favour of a national representing body known as the Canadian Association of Fire Fighters (CAFF). The result was two provincial associations, the Provincial Federation of Ontario Fire Fighters (PFOFF) and the Ontario Professional Fire Fighters Association (OPFFA) representing professional fire fighters in Ontario.

In 1995, the provincial government, then led by Premier Mike Harris, introduced sweeping changes to labour legislation including the total revamping of the Fire Departments Act. This, combined with municipal amalgamation, forced the provincial organizations to look at the advantages of returning to one voice.

The 'new' Ontario Professional Fire Fighters Association (OPFFA) was formed in October 1997 as a result of two former provincial Associations uniting into one strong Association under the IAFF, representing professional fire fighters in the province.

As an affiliate of the IAFF, we provide Ontario's professional fire fighters with the combined services, resources and efforts of both organizations. This puts our members in the enviable situation of receiving representation at its highest levels.

All Together Now

 
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