A few days ago a lady said "my husband is not a real firefighter, he's only a volunteer" As a vol firefighter I was realy ticked! but chose to keep my mouth shut! lol what are some of your thoughts on this statment, and how would handel it if it were said to you?


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Well...if that is true...our country is 70% protected from fire by pretend people! When we go to a frie, its pretend fire too! What an ignorant comment...

I don't know what other  areas of the country does to enforce training of volunteers. I know our county put through laws to be sure volunteers had the training and age to be a volunteer and officer in our county.

We had to take county and state classes some of which duplicated each other.

We later had to submit  training records or take required training to be certified by the state and the NFTA.

I was certified as a Firefighter 3 with all the training I had taken after I had joined my dept.

Anyone that was certified has a officer had to have Fire Officer One or higher.                                       Members of my vol dept have had classes in engine, truck, hazmat, tech rescue and a few others has high as they could.                                                                                                                                            Over the years some of our training by the county has fallen off over money problems or loss of trainers  and we have to travel out of the county to other counties to take required classes most which are state classes.

My brother had the same amount of classes has I had and had moved to another state and joined depts there. He later went into the Navy and when he moved to a area he would put in to join a volunteer or combination dept near where he and his wife and kids lived.

 He show his training records and  felt in one location they wanted to have him start from the begining and one turned him down because he had more training than the chief.


1st I say she does not have respect for her husband or for what He does!It's not about how much money a Firefighter makes or does not make. It's about Who He or She is & what They do!! In fact I predict she has no clue what is involved in being a Firefighter. The hours of training, hours on scene trying to save lives,property & protecting the community every day! I know darn well she has no clue or will have til it's her family,friend(s) affected by a fire or medical emergency. I predict she's never wondered what would happen if she called 911 and the Firefighters did not come! Unfortunately she is among many who do not give any thought to what would They do if They dialed 911 & the Firefighters did not come!

There are two kinds of firefighters. There are those that do only what they have to for a check, and those who strive to be the best, evevy day... check or no check.



Enough with the bickering amongst ourselves. Then you all wonder why the public looks down upon us and especially with the media jumping down our case, every chance they get. Always remember that we are all brothers and sisters and though we may not always agree, we are family and must look out for one another!Alvin Gonzalez

Snr. Dep. Chief

Assn. Aux-Vol Firefighters

West Lawrence,NY

Nice pic, hits right on the money.

It's a respect thing as to why so many get worked up. For vols to work hard at something they love to do and then have people say they are not good enough solely for the fact they dont get paid for it is pretty demeaning. The general public doesn't bother me so much when they say it because many of them are uneducated in how much volunteers work at being good firefighters.

The ones that get me mad are the paid ff's who look down on vol's just because of the non paid status. I know a few who have this view and thankfully many more that see them as firefighters, regardless of status. (I hope your the latter)

 We are all firefighters and thats all that matters.

That sounds like a good thing they have going in WI Don.

WA volunteers are covered by the state if we are injured from the moment our tones go off to the first stop after we leave the station when the call is done. So even when headed to/from the station/incident in our POV's we are insured.

We also have a retirement system set up where there we pay in for up to 25 years and can pull the retirement at certain ages.

I think one thing that has been missed with this forum the whole time. What real money earning job this guy has that his wife would say he is not a real firefighter. If you are a volunteer firefighter you could be a low salery earner to  middle class to something under a millionare. I have know members that own their own company to couldn't keep a job longer than their arm length in days.

It all depends on your education and the way you live.

Some career firefighters do have second jobs or part time jobs when they are not working their regular jobs.




I know that my department has death and disablity compensation for it's volunteers injured on the job. we have also worked a deal for discounted rates with certain insurance companies including aflac to help cover costs during recovery.

I agree. I prefer to not subscribe to the term professional firefighter because it is a term people use to describe paid firefighters. Whether volunteer or paid, in the world of firefighting, there are those that are professional in their efforts. While professional does mean, denotatively speaking, to do something for monetary gain, it is often perceived as the connotative meaning, which means to perform at the highest possible level. There are poor performing firefighters in both the volunteer and paid worlds. The bottom line is that receiving a paycheck for anything does not automatically mean that you are the best at that particular endeavor.

Where is the like button on here...?

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