International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Statement in Support of Nomination of Elaine Chao as U.S. Secretary of Transportation


International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) General President Harold A. Schaitberger issued the following statement today in support of President-elect Donald Trump’s nomination of the Honorable Elaine Chao as our nation’s 17th Secretary of Transportation.

“The Department of Transportation (DOT) plays a vital role in keeping our country safe. As the largest provider of hazardous materials training across the United States, the IAFF works in tandem with the DOT to secure grants necessary to ensure that fire fighters are properly trained and safely equipped to handle potential transportation emergencies, such as pipeline incidents and Bakken crude oil-by-rail disasters. We believe that Secretary Chao will be a strong partner in working with the IAFF and all first responders to enhance transportation safety issues.

“The Secretary’s previous role as Deputy Secretary of Transportation under President George H.W Bush and her subsequent cabinet role at the Department of Labor make her eminently qualified to head the Department of Transportation.

“The IAFF also worked closely with Secretary Chao when she led the Department of Labor in President George W. Bush’s administration. We found common ground with her on complex issues, such as FLSA overtime regulations for fire fighters. And when our views differed, we maintained an open and honest dialogue.  We believe we will have the same open-door policy with Secretary Chao on issues of public safety in her new role, and we strongly support her nomination.”

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