Above is a picture from IAFF Local 36 showing one of its members handing a t-shirt to President Barack Obama yesterday during an event at Arlington County (VA) Fire Department Station 105. President Obama was there to talk about his jobs initiative to help veterans find work as firefighters, police officers and park rangers. The President is now the owner of a shirt that firefighters in the District of Columbia would not be allowed to wear while on-duty because it has the DCFD insignia banned by Chief Kenneth Ellerbe. The Washington Post's Mike Debonis writing in his District of Debonis blog is on top of this story:
Ed Smith, president of Local 36 of the International Association of Fire Fighters, said there were no political overtones intended in handing POTUS the shirt.
”Those were shirts we had made up last year, before the change,” he said. “Those are the shirts we wear when we’re out in the community, attending different events. … We try to look uniform.”
Lon Walls, an FEMS spokesperson, said he wasn’t reading too much into the giveaway.
“People give stuff to the president all the time,” he said. “I’m sure he doesn’t know what all the issues are.”
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Also on STATter911 …
- Three DC firefighters face discipline over appearing with President Obama without authorization. One of those in trouble publicly opposed Chief Kenneth Ellerbe’s uniform policy. – February 22, 2013
- Can’t anyone get it right around here? For third time in just 24 hours Chief Kenneth Ellerbe says DC reporters got a story wrong. – February 23, 2013
- A bizarre DC update: Ellerbe wanted Rubin’s ‘head on a stick’. The Rube finally uses Ellerbe’s name and he gets back-up from his own arch-enemy. Oh yes, and there is some real news. – August 17, 2013
- UPDATED: DC Medic unit protecting President runs out of gas. Also, a scratch your head type PIO statement on staffing shortages. – August 12, 2013
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