Rookie EMTs in New York City barely getting by on near-minimum wages: unions

By Robert Pozarycki

February 18, 2020

The Fire Department’s Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) responded to more than 1.5 million medical emergencies last year, saving countless lives in the process.

But many of these first responders — who endure high stress in a job where mere seconds may mean the difference between life and death — barely have anything left to save once they get their paychecks, according to unions representing them.

City Hall and the EMT unions — including FDNY EMS Local 2507, EMS Superior Officers Association of the FDNY and DC 37 Local 3621 — began negotiations Tuesday on a new collective bargaining agreement.

The unions hope the de Blasio Administration will give a significant boost to the entry-level salary for an EMT, which is just above the minimum wage — $33,320 annually, or about $16 per hour. New York City’s hourly minimum wage is $15.

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