Councilman calls for residents to honor all Philly firefighters

A Philadelphia City Councilman is asking the public to help build firefighters’ morale.

A simple hello or thank you could be just what a firefighter needs during an impasse with the city over salary, says Councilman Jim Kenney.

He’d like to expand the firefighters union awards for heroism into Firefighters Appreciation Week.

“From Monday through Friday, we are asking people to stop by the firehouse in their neighborhood,” he said. “School groups, civic association folks, regular folks from the neighborhood — stop in, shake their hand, and tell them thank you.”

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Firefighters union head Bill Gault says he knows the firefighters are appreciated for the work they do, but the fight over their current contract remains a frustrating issue.

“I really want to thank the citizens,” Gault said. “We know you always are going to be there, we know you respect us. This administration is the problem.”

The Nutter administration has opposed the arbitration award for a salary increase, saying the city can’t afford it.

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