City Councilwoman Sharon Copeland comments on Fire and Rescue Department incident.

February 22, 2006  

Jacksonville City Council Member Sharon L. Copeland (District 6) made the following statement regarding recent events involving the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department:

'In light of the recent events that have occurred at the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department, it is imperative, as responsible citizens of Jacksonville, that we await the findings of the ongoing investigation by the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office. In my opinion, to jump to conclusions at this time, without the proper evidence as to whether this situation is an isolated event or a more widespread racial issue would be irresponsible and dangerous to our city. We, the local government, owe the people of this community the facts and nothing less. At this juncture, we need to step back and allow Sheriff Rutherford and Chief Barrett the necessary time to complete a thorough investigation of the situation before we jump to any conclusions. It has been my experience in life that an action not based upon solid facts becomes a reaction that could have and should have been better thought out before reacting. Furthermore, don't we owe the 1400 firefighters that put their lives at risk daily for the citizens of Jacksonville a thorough investigation and a well thought out plan of action based on solid facts and not speculation?'