Just a week after the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sided with a Houston firefighter's charges she was harassed, HFD was hit with another embarrassing allegation of firehouse misconduct.
In a press conference today, a Hispanic activist group said a firefighter had found his equipment tied in a noose, a note saying, "Learn your (expletive deleted) job, Mexican. You should be glad that you don't live in Arizona" and another note referring to him as a "beaner."
KPRC had the story initially about the incidents, which are alleged to have occurred at Station 42 in far east Houston.
The city attorney's office issued an official, and boilerplate, message:
"We take any allegation of racial harassment very seriously. This matter has been under investigation by the OIG and it is my understanding that the investigation is near completion. Nothing further can be said until the investigation is complete," city attorney David Feldman said.
The firefighter involved in the complaint, Joseph Salcido, did not attend the press conference and did not contact the groups holding it, said Johnny Mata of LULAC and the Greater Houston Coalition for Justice.
The groups are calling for a federal investigation into the complaints.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.