A deputy fire chief in Mount Vernon is in hot water for making alleged racist and sexist comments he made in a conversation that was recorded.
Mount Vernon Deputy Fire Chief Al-Farid Salahuddin has been suspended without pay after the recording surfaced, including him using racist terms about other firefighters and sexist terms against elected officials.
Salahuddin was suspended without pay as of Tuesday, Oct. 1. The fire department has declined to issue a statement.
“I condemn the recording purportedly made by Deputy Fire Chief Al-Farid Salahuddin,” stated Legislator Lyndon Williams, who represents Mount Vernon.“The content of the recording is divisive, racist and sexist. I strongly condemn racist and sexist statements made against people of color and women and personally will not be silent or condone such statements when made by a person of color against others.
“It is particularly disappointing when such statements are made by persons in positions of power in our community who are sworn to service of all of our residents. We are proud to live harmoniously in a diverse community comprising over 90 different nationalities from all over the world. We reject the emerging national trend of divisiveness coming from the President on down. Such divisiveness has no place here.”
The legislator went on to demand that Salahuddin issue a public apology if the recording is determined to be of him.
“This kind of behavior did not start and will not end with the Deputy Fire Chief. It comes from a systemic culture of dysfunction, disrespect, and in-fighting at city hall among some elected officials recently, which breathe this type of indecent, irresponsible behavior. A change at the top in January will set the stage for a different tone of dignity, respect, and decency throughout the local government.”
This is a developing story. Check Daily Voice for updates.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.