Why is it difficult to recruit new members to be a volunteer firefighter? Could it be that new members are afraid to get chew out because they might make mistakes? Be advised. This is a no holds barred discussion. 

Views: 1202

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Derek,

 

 

Here is an example of the career vrs volunteer battle being started by the career folks,

 

A department near me was a combination department for probably about 20 years (knowing they have been at least since 2000 when i was a cadet there) that was doing fine volunteers were staffing the unstaffed stations in the district 4 out of 6 stations at the time that i was there after i left and joined a department closer to where i lived they ended up getting full time guys at one other station. 

 

When i was there the volunteers commited the same training and qualifications as the full time guys.  They signed up to pull shifts at the staffed stations and would get a pretty decent turn out if the department recieved a fire call or multipul calls at the same time.  after I left I was talking to some of the volunteers there that i still had contact with, and they had went from almost 50 volunteers to about 15 due to the full time staff not wanting the volunteers to come in and pull shifts at the staffed stations (that respond on all ems calls with the ambulance as they are the only stations with ems transport units) even though they were only running 2-3 on the engine the volunteers were not wanted at the stations. Then about a year ago the department said they needed to get rid of the volunteers due to the cost associated to the volunteers. They gave the volunteers to the end of the year to find a new home before they left that department as well as getting rid of the reserve chief. About march time frame of that next year they turned around and hired 4 new full time staff members. still running out of 3 stations with 3 of their stations being fully unstaffed stations with no volunteer force to take a truck from those stations. Now if that isnt the "career" staff pushing the volunteers out to get more paid staff then i dont know what is



Derek J Sinesi said:

Bobby, Normally the battle of career vs volunteer keeps going on due the the volunteer side. Not always but most of the time. One shouldn't be to hard on the career guys. They are smart enough to get paid for doing the job. We both do the same job. What i have seen is the volunteers saying how good they are to the career guys. The career guy probably knows what the volunteer guys are doing for training. (Most of the time not much.) This is the career vs volunteer thing. I have never seen this being a problem with recruitment. But if you know of a department; that it has been a problem get me a number and contact person because i'd love to learn about this being a problem.

The problem with generalizations is sometimes you are partially right and most often you are partially wrong.  In my area MOST volunteer or POC FDs are requiring state offered training in addition to inhouse training. Some require just the minimum entry level courses.  Others go as far as FF1, FF2, Driver Operator if you wish to be an MPO, and Officer courses if you seek promotion.  The broad stroke brush catches everyone and that is unfair to those that demand more, whether institutionally or personally.

Often, getting a job as a career firefighter is little more than being a good test taker.  What they do after they get hired speaks volumes about them.

Don, I will have to agree with you. I have good friends that are career firefighters and they are darn good at what they do. Two of them are on my Volunteer department also. Career firefighters are the same as volunteers you have good ones and some bad ones. I will also state that the volunteer's do give the fire service in whole a bad name for the most part. The fact is career vs volunteer shouldn't make a difference in recruitment. I know it does in some places.

I also understand training and requirements. I also know that there are departments that do just the minimum. We require are guys to take more then what the state minimums are. That's just us. We also expect are guys to be professional when at any fire department function and in public. I will try not to use such a broad brush  in the future.

Just had a kid quit tonight because his girlfriend was mad he went on a structure fire and it took a while to get the rig back in service. She thought it should take less than 20 min. 5 guys to wash hose, repack hose, clean scba's, refill cylinders, wash, dry and clean the inside and mop. Needles to say it was on a dirt road and all equipment was a muddy mess. Some people just don't understand.



Chris Moyer said:

Just had a kid quit tonight because his girlfriend was mad he went on a structure fire and it took a while to get the rig back in service. She thought it should take less than 20 min. 5 guys to wash hose, repack hose, clean scba's, refill cylinders, wash, dry and clean the inside and mop. Needles to say it was on a dirt road and all equipment was a muddy mess. Some people just don't understand.

That guy should not walk away from that girl he should run as fast as he could.  His life will be nothing more than her telling him what to do until he finally wises up.



Derek J Sinesi said:

Don, I will have to agree with you. I have good friends that are career firefighters and they are darn good at what they do. Two of them are on my Volunteer department also. Career firefighters are the same as volunteers you have good ones and some bad ones. I will also state that the volunteer's do give the fire service in whole a bad name for the most part. The fact is career vs volunteer shouldn't make a difference in recruitment. I know it does in some places.

I also understand training and requirements. I also know that there are departments that do just the minimum. We require are guys to take more then what the state minimums are. That's just us. We also expect are guys to be professional when at any fire department function and in public. I will try not to use such a broad brush  in the future.

Bad firefighters give firefighters a bad name. Pay isn't a factor really.

Chris, Hope someone from your department is going to go talk to him. It would be a shame to loose a guy to a girlfriend. Like Don stated he should run from her there's others out there.

I hope he does...but doubt it unfortunately. But if don't have the guts to stand up to her then he's lost.

David,

      In Don's defense he never stated any such thing. I did. It really doesn't matter paid or not bad firefighters make the whole fire service look bad. I really wasn't trying to turn this into a career vs volunteer issue here. Read back and you'll find tons of them threads here.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

FireRescue Magazine

Find Members Fast


Or Name, Dept, Keyword
Invite Your Friends
Not a Member? Join Now

© 2020   Created by Firefighter Nation WebChief.   Powered by

Badges  |  Contact Firefighter Nation  |  Terms of Service