Union: Local fire district plans to create bulletproof wall for meetings

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by Alissa Reitmeier and Dan Greenwald

KMOV.com

Posted on April 22, 2014 at 5:27 PM

Updated Wednesday, Apr 23 at 5:04 AM

(KMOV.com) – News 4 has learned the Monarch Fire Protection District's board recently bought bullet proof vests so they could protect board members during meetings.

Representatives from a firefighters union have told News 4 that the board purchased used Kevlar bullet proof vests from police. The vests will be used to create a bulletproof wall meant to protect board members during meetings.

News 4 attempted to obtain a comment from Board President Robin Harris and Secretary Jane Cunningham but they refused to talk about the wall because all security measures are discussed during closed meetings and are not made public. Currently, a police officer stands guard at board meetings.

Firefighters have told News 4 they understand why a police officer is necessary at meetings, but do not understand why the wall is being built.

“I'm not sure what good it'll even do for them safety wise in the event something were to happen,” Chris Gelvin said. “But I can't even imagine what it's going to look like so I'm not sure.”

There has been tension between the board and firefighters in the past. In 2011, a deputy chief was fired, but then rehired as assistant chief in March.

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