DETROIT (WWJ) – City of Detroit mechanics say they are ready and able to repair and maintain the city’s EMS trucks.

Mechanics who work on Detroit’s EMS fleet took their message to Detroit’s City Council, Tuesday — complaining about the continual outsourcing of their jobs. 

AFSCME Local 542 President Phillis McMillian says the work is being sent to two area auto dealerships while her mechanics are out of work.

“We have steadily been be losing out workforce. We have lost two-thirds of our workforce. They have been privatizing our work out. They have undermined the union. They are getting ready to lay off a lot more AFSCME mechanics,” McMillian said.

“We have emergency rigs that need to be fixed, but there’s two mechanics to every rig. We need our mechanics back to work,” she said.

Also speaking before council members, Tuesday, AFSCME staff  representative Diangelo Malcom said that this is not only an issue of public safety. He said the outsourcing of these jobs robs mechanics, who are Detroit residents, the opportunity to be gainfully employed.

Detroit’s EMS response time is alarmingly slow and city officials have blamed the problem on the low percentage of EMS truck available for service on any given day. (More on this story).

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