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RI Supreme Court Rejects Delaying Arbitration For Providence Firefighters

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In a decision released Wednesday, the state Supreme Court declined to delay an arbitration case involving the Providence firefighters’ union. The City...

In a decision released Wednesday, the state Supreme Court declined to delay an arbitration case involving the Providence firefighters’ union.

The City of Providence had asked the Supreme Court to delay the arbitration process slated to start next Wednesday, December 16.

But the Supreme Court rejected the appeal. The city is separately appealing the question of whether the firefighters have a legal right to arbitration.

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza’s spokesman, Evan England, said the city is ready to use the arbitration process "to enforce its right to restructure -- and more efficiently manage" fire department staffing.

Elorza cut the number of daily fire department shifts earlier this year, from four to three, in an attempt to cut overtime spending. The firefighters’ union said the change should be made through collective bargaining.

Elorza announced the intended shift change in May.
Elorza announced the intended shift change in May.