A firefighter in Bourne, Mass., has been terminated after posting antigay slurs on Facebook.
Richard Doherty, a veteran firefighter of 16 years, reportedly used foul language and bigoted remarks last summer while slamming local police officers, his deputy fire chief, and the town of Bourne itself.
Town Administrator Thomas Guarino said, “Firefighter Doherty has disqualified himself from the ability to serve as a firefighter because he elected to post on the Internet a message that causes the public to question whether he can serve all of its citizens.”
John Ford, Bourne Board of Selectmen, supported Guarino’s statement. “The town of Bourne wouldn’t tolerate that kind of mindset from employees,” he said. We send out a message that we want them to be professional.”
A spokesman for the firefighters union said his organization will be appealing the termination. “Mr. Doherty is not a racist, bigot, [anti-gay], nor anti-special needs as the town alleges,” he told WDHD.com. “He has never provided substandard service or patient care to anyone regardless of his personal feelings.”
The union believes that Mr. Doherty’s status updates were set up to be limited to friends and family and were not meant for public consumption.
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