IAFF Documents


The following documents are often not openly shared with union members. They include:

  • The Constitution and Bylaws of the International Association of Fire Fighters
  • The IAFF Local Union Trial Manual
  • The IAFF's Sample Charges & Trials Forms
  • A IAFF Local in PA Found Guilty of Engaging In Secondary Boycott

The IAFF International constitution





Section 1. Misconduct and Penalties

Except as otherwise provided in this Constitution and By Laws, any officer or member of the Association, or of any local union, or of a state or provincial association, or joint council, after charges, trial, and conviction of any of the following offenses, may be reprimanded, fined, removed from office, suspended, or expelled as the evidence and circumstances may warrant in the judgment of the officer or officers or legally constituted tribunal by whom he/she is tried as hereafter provided in Article XVII. The following shall constitute misconduct:

A. Refusal or failure without justifiable cause to comply with or abide by the provisions of this Constitution and By-Laws, the valid decision of any officer or officers thereof or the valid decisions of the Executive Board or those of the Association convention, or the valid provisions of applicable constitutions and by-laws of local unions, state or provincial associations or joint councils.

B. Committing any act of fraud, embezzlement, larceny, or misappropriation of any funds or property or other thing of value belonging to the Association or any local union or other subordinate body thereof, or refusing, failing or neglecting to comply with the provisions of this Constitution and By-Laws requiring a full and accurate accounting of all funds, property, books, and records for examination and audit.

C. Libeling or slandering or causing to be libeled or slandered any officer or member of the Association or of any local union or other subordinate body thereof, except in the form of charges of misconduct properly filed against an officer or member as provided by this Constitution and By-Laws.

D. Failing, refusing or neglecting to appear, without proper cause, as a prosecuting witness after filing charges against a member or officer of this Association.

E. Advocating or encouraging any labor or any other rival organization, or acquiring or maintaining membership in any such organization including volunteer fire departments or associations.

F. Maintaining membership in, or engaging in any subversive activity in support of any authoritarian, totalitarian, terrorist or other organization which advocates the overthrow of the democratic forms of government under which our members live.

G. Acquiring membership by fraud, false representation or deceit.

H. Filing false charges against any officer or member of the Association or of any local union or other subordinate body of the Association; provided, however, that it is understood that for the purposes of this provision false charges are not merely charges of which an officer or member is acquitted.

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but rather charges which are filed recklessly or in bad faith without substance, foundation, or reasonable basis of support.

I. Committing any physical assault upon any officer, member, representative or employee of the Association or of any subordinate body thereof while such person is engaged in the performance of his duties for the International or subordinate unions.

J. Engaging in conduct detrimental to the best interests of the Association or its subordinate unions which places or tends to place them in disrepute with other labor organizations, employers, or the public.

K. Failure or refusal to abide by the rules of order or parliamentary procedure established for the conduct of meetings of the Association, a local union, or other subordinate body of this Association or at International conventions.

L. Conduct unbecoming a member of this Association; provided, however, that utilization of this provision shall be valid only when the charges are set forth in specific terms specifying the act or acts or conduct alleged to be unbecoming a member.

M. Refusal or failure without good reason to accept service of charges and stand trial on such charges.

N. Working a secondary job part-time, paid on call, volunteer or otherwise as a firefighter, emergency medical services worker, public safety or law enforcement officer, or as a worker in a related service, whether in the public or private sector, where such job is within the work jurisdiction of any affiliate or which adversely impacts the interests of any affiliate or the IAFF. Upon a finding of guilt of working a secondary job in violation of this subsection, it is recommended that the penalty include disqualification from holding office in any affiliate and/or expulsion from membership for the period that the misconduct persists. Charges filed for the misconduct described in this subsection shall be preferred by a member of the charged party’s local and/or a member of an adversely affected affiliate.

Section 2. Rival Organizations

With the approval of the Executive Board the General President may appoint a five (5) member Executive Board Committee to investigate and determine if the charges against any outside organization warrant the declaring of the term “rival organization”, and report the committee’s recommendation to the full Executive Board. An outside organization may be declared a rival organization by two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Executive Board.

Upon receipt of a request by the charging party involved or by an affiliate of the Association to remove the declaration of rival organization from an outside organization, the Executive Board must consult with all parties involved and may vote to revoke the designation of rival organization by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote; provided, however,

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