Tag Archives: Fire Commissioner Salvatore Cassano

NYPD issues social media rules for officers


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Screenshot via Facebook

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly is patrolling the streets of the World Wide Web.

According to the New York Daily News, the commissioner released a list of what the city’s 35,000 officers can and cannot put up on their personal social media sites.

A three-page NYPD memo, obtained by The News, states “Members of the service should be aware that activities on personal social media sites may be used against them to undermine their credibility as members of the department.”

The order also explicitly bans the creation of any online site by precincts or units, as well warning officers “not to disclose or allude to their status as members of the department.”

Police officers will also be prohibited from posting photos of themselves in uniform, unless at an official ceremony, the News reported.

The memo states that any officers caught violating the policy will face disciplinary action, including termination.

Those working in the NYPD have mixed reactions to the memo.

Edward Mullins, head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, supports the order telling The News that, “[The NYPD] have to be held to a higher standard.”

Robert Gonzelez, a police training expert at John Jay College, told The News he disagreed with the memo, calling it an example of “unauthorized censorship,” and saying that, “members of the NYPD are proud public officials and should be authorized to express that right on social media sites without retribution.”

The NYPD is no stranger to controversy when it comes to social media. Seventeen cops were disciplined last year after they were caught posting offensive comments on a Facebook page entitled “No More West Indian Day Detail.” More than 150 comments were posted calling the participants of the annual parade “savages” and “animals.”

The memo comes off the heels of two FDNY employees, including Fire Commissioner Salvatore Cassano’s son, were caught posting racist tweets. The FDNY is in the process of reviewing its social media guidelines following the controversy.

 

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Record low fire fatalities, ambulance response time in 2012


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

In 2012, there was a record low of 58 civilian fire deaths in New York City.

Last year was a banner year for public safety, say officials.

In 2012, the FDNY had the fewest civilian fire deaths and fastest average ambulance response times for life-threatening medical emergencies in New York City history, announced Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Fire Commissioner Salvatore Cassano.

“With record low number of murders and shootings and the fewest fire deaths in our city’s history, 2012 was a historic year for public safety,” said Bloomberg.

Last year there were 58 fire deaths, a decline of 12 percent compared to 2011, four fewer fatalities than the previous record set in 2010, and a 43 percent decline since 2001.

There were not working smoke detectors in most of the fire deaths in 2012, and the top causes were accidental electrical fires, smoking, incendiary fires and cooking related.

Structural fire response time in 2012, at 4:04, was two seconds higher than the previous year, but that was partially due to Superstorm Sandy, said the FDNY.

During the storm, there were 21 serious fires that destroyed around 200 homes and businesses, including more than 120 homes in Breezy Point.

At 6:31, EMS response time improved despite a 3.4 percent increase in call volume, breaking the record low set in 2010.

Councilmember Elizabeth Crowley, chair of the City Council’s fire committee, stressed that these records might not have been set without efforts from the city council to fight the mayor’s proposed closing of as many as 20 fire companies.

“We can’t afford cuts to firehouses, and I will continue working with my colleagues to ensure the FDNY receives the required resources to keep us safe,” said Crowley.

 

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