Firefighters reinstated after American flag controversy

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MAYWOOD, Ill. (WGN) — A small victory for a group of firefighters, especially on the 9/11 anniversary.

A group of suburban firefighters who had been relieved of their duties for refusing to remove patriotic flags from their lockers and helmets has been reinstated, according to WGN .

The Maywood Fire Chief ordered the removal of all images, but then on Wednesday told WGN  “After review, I made a decision to put department issued flags on every locker and in every locker room.”

Firefighters say that’s not enough.

They want the chief to resign and have filed charges with a labor board for creating a hostile work environment.

The Maywood Fire Chief says his original  decision to remove images was about uniformity and bias.

Some firefighters were upset because that also meant removing the American flag from their lockers.

The chief said the flag doesn’t need to be in every locker, it hangs from the pole outside each station and is on the shoulder of every uniform.

“For guys to have 9-11 memorials on their helmets, that means something,” said firefighter David Flowers Jr. “It’s burned into some guys helmets. That means a lot.”

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