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Fire chief lifts ban on women at fires

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CLEARWATER, Fla., Sep 22, 2005 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- A Florida fire chief has rescinded a directive banning the nine women in his department from burning buildings.

Jamie Geer, chief of Fire & Rescue in Clearwater, issued the ban last Saturday. He said he had been told two of the women had been warned that, because of their opposition to the union, the next fire they fought would be the last one, the Tampa Tribune reported.

Local officials, including City Manager Bill Horne, said the threat appeared to be not as serious as it seemed at first. Horne said the women were not willing to identify who made the threat.

"It's very clear we have employees who don't want to be singled out as troublemakers," Horne said.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International.

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