Mount Vernon deputy fire chief reinstated after racist, sexist remarks

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Mount Vernon's deputy fire chief has returned to the job 90 days after being suspended without pay for making racist and sexist remarks.

Deputy Fire Chief Al-Farid Salahudden was suspended after he and Fire Lt. Ervin Oakes were heard in a 32-minute audio recording, sent to News 12 anonymously, speaking about various topics. The conversation, recorded in a firehouse, caught the two making racist, sexist and derogatory remarks about city employees, including Councilwoman Janice Duarte and Deputy Fire Chief Tom Duffy.

"And my girl, she eventually going to get that s---... Duarte .. and then all the n---- s--- is done. Then all the n---- s--- is over," Salahudden said. "Duffy? Are you f---g s---ing me? That cracker racist b---," added Salahudden.

The conversation also alluded to members of the department having criminal backgrounds and dirty politics among union leaders and political figures.

Fire department officials have never commented on the recordings, but city officials say they are committed to enhancing workforce training when it comes to bias and diversity.

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