Serving Toronto since 1918
During the reign of the Mike Harris government, IAFF Local 3888 arose from the forced amalgamation in 1998 of the six cities of the former Metropolitan Toronto. Each of the six former cities fire departments were separate entities, with locals having their own IAFF number, their own executive board to represent them, and their own proud history.
As with other workers in cities, the fire fighting profession in Toronto arose out of the Industrial Revolution (1760 to 1840) that saw a shift from an agriculture-based economy to one based on large-scale industry, mechanized manufacturing, and the factory system. New machines, new power sources, and new ways of organizing work made existing industries more productive and efficient. Fires were a hazardous biproduct of the Industrial Revolution.
Early fire departments in Toronto were initially volunteer bucket brigades that started will horse drawn ‘apparatus’ that required person power on-scene to fight fires resulting from hazardous use of the ‘old’/new fuel devices and technologies.
As ‘Toronto’ grew out and away from the core, each of the six locals had its own history that arose from sentinel events and the continuous efforts to improve working conditions and to improve members lives when they were not at work. Some ‘local’ highlights include:
Toronto – IAFF Local 113 – Chartered August 22nd, 1918
1826 – York had the first formal fire department – the York volunteer fire brigade.
1871 – Toronto formed the first professional fire department staffed by 57 men.
1904 – the Great Toronto Fire.
Prior to becoming an IAFF affiliate, on June 21st, 1918 the Toronto Firefighters’ Association joined the Toronto District Labour council.
York – IAFF Local 411 – Chartered August 3rd, 1934
1928 – the first paid fire fighters.
1947 – reduction of the hours of work from 72 hours per week to 56 hours – hire more fire fighters; war bonds
1952 – The Fire Departments Act allowed FF associations greater power in negotiations.
1960 – work week was reduced to 48 hours and in 1963 lowered to 42 hours per week.
East York – IAFF Local 418 – Chartered November 2nd, 1934
1928 – first paid fire fighters
Scarborough – IAFF Local 626 – Chartered May 8th, 1939
1922 – Volunteer brigades established
1925 – November 2nd – first paid firefighters
North York – IAFF Local 752 – Chartered May 8th, 1939
1941 – first paid fire fighters
1943 – May 10th – North York Professional FF Association
1948 – 17 fire fighters working 56 hours/week
Etobicoke – IAFF Local 1137 – Chartered October 15th, 1953
1953 – June 15th – first paid fire fighters (15)
- 56 hours/week, 2 platoons
1954 – Hurricane Hazel
Today, IAFF Local 3888 is the 5th largest local in the IAFF.
As part of the IAFF, Local 3888 has actively advocated and lobbied for best practices to improve health & safety and in response to the hazards associated with the work performed by the membership.
We have made gains in having occupational exposures recognized in presumptive legislation. 19 cancers, heart injuries and PTSD are all recognized as established illnesses/injuries for which WSIB claims are more easily processed.
Local 3888 has continued many practices or events from the former locals: The Fire Fighters Ball, Magic Shows, Christmas Parties, a variety of hockey and baseball tournaments. Many were merged and some remained as a testament to the rich history and heritage of the six former locals.
In the aftermath of 9-11 Toronto Fire Fighters raised over $270,000.00 for New York Fire Fighters.
The TPFFA has carried on in the proud tradition of their former locals serving the public with the professionalism and involved in the community charity and fundraising. On-going support for Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) has seen the local raise hundred of thousands of dollars for the ‘Jerry’s Kids’. A partnership with Variety Village has seen the 3888 Christmas Party hosted at the Scarborough facility and in-kind we support the program run in the facility.