Poison Pen letter is sneaky, vicious attack on Niagara Falls Firefighters

Risky Sanabria, president of Local 714 Firefighters

“You know there was a time when public servants really did care about the public they served,” the unsigned screed that arrived in the mail this week said, “Well I guess as the song says: ‘Those times they are a changin’.”

“TAKE A LOOK AT THIS EXCERPT FROM A LETTER TO MEMBERS OF FIREFIGHTERS LOCAL 714” it continues.

Purported to be from an email sent members by Niagara Falls Uniformed Fire Firefighters Local 714 president Risky Sanabria prior to the 2017 City Council election, it states:

“CONFIDENTIAL”

“As a reminder, especially our newer members, be really careful what you share about our job to those who are on the outside. We have the best job in the world and there are very jealous people out there, jealous of our benefits and pensions.

“The best way to fight these people is to make sure our candidates WIN. Although many of our members don’t live in the City, all 90 L714 members know at least 5 people in the City who you can call and ask to vote for our endorsed candidates.

“In Solidarity,
Risky Sanabria
L714 President”

The unsolicited flyer continued, “NOW ASK YOURSELF… WHEN DID THE PUBLIC SAFETY MOTTO CHANGE FROM: TO PROTECT and SERVE to PROTECT WHAT’S MINE AND SERVE MYSELF!!”

In the public interest, we are printing the entire text of the email, in which does not appear the word “CONFIDENTIAL,” as follows:

Risky Sanabria <XXXXXXXXXXX@hotmail.com> Oct. 26 at 6:58 pm

Local 714 Members

It has been brought to our attention that this Mike Stella has been speaking negatively about our job and our members. He’s doing it on Social Media forums. He’s a business owner in Youngstown and owns the Mug & Musket. Apparently he has some rentals in the City and feels very opinionated about the current administration and the candidates we support. He speaks negatively about our Union and claims to speak with our own members as he makes his criticizing comments about the job and what goes on in the firehouse.

Not a smart move to alienate an entire group of people when you have a restaurant open to the public. Let’s all consider his negativity towards us when selecting a dining location in Youngstown.

As a reminder, especially our newer members, be really careful what you share about our job to those who are on the outside. We have the best job in the world and there are very jealous people out there. Jealous of our benefits and pensions. The best way to fight these people is to make sure our candidates WIN. Although many of our members don’t live in the City, all 90 L714 members know at least 5 people in the City who you can call and ask to vote for our endorsed candidates. These people don’t understand why we have so much politicial clout, but they also don’t understand that political involvement is the best way to safeguard our livelihood as best we can. The(y) will try and drag you into arguments on these Social Media forums. Do not allow them to get you fired up, it’s what they want. The admins of these forums communicate with each other and try to bait us.

The best way to fight these people is to make sure our candidates WIN. Although many of our members don’t live in the City, all 90 L714 members know at least 5 people in the City who you can call and ask to vote for our endorsed candidates. Whether it’s a family member or a friend, if each of us makes 5 calls, that’s potentially 450 votes. Historically, that can be enough votes to swing a WIN. We’ll be sending letters to our retirees to do the same.

In Solidarity,
Risky Sanabria
L714 President

Mike Stella, proprietor, at the grand opening of the Mug & Musket

We asked Mike Stella if he sent out the anonymous letter, impugning the firefighters, and he replied, “No I did not. I was just talking with Shawn Weber a minute ago. He got one too. I don’t do things anonymously. I’m also too cheap to buy stamps. Lol.”

“It’s Niagara Falls politics as usual,” lamented Niagara County Legislator and Niagara Falls Firefighter Captain Jay Zona. “This guy from Youngstown got the email and has a (expletive deleted) for the firefighters now. I never got the email because I’m not in that union. They now have been mailing it around to different people in the city. Like I said… NF politics.

“I don’t usually respond to anonymous stuff… I put my name to everything I say and I’m in office. The cowardly anonymous stuff is weak.”

NF Fire Dept. Captain and Niagara County Legislator Jay Zona

If Mr. Stella is to be taken at his word and was not, in fact, responsible for leaking this email with its attendant garbage, perhaps the person who did would step forward and make their identity known.

One Comment

  1. I cannot let politics get in the way of me getting a “musket burger” once a week. Great tasting — but you have to chew it slowly or – due to the gunpowder sauce — will go off in your face.

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