USFA and Fire Corps Initiate Study on Recruitment and Retention of Fire Service Traffic Control Personnel

Tuesday, 20 September 2005

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Charlie Dickinson, the Deputy U.S. Fire Administrator, announced today that the Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Fire Administration and the Cumberland Valley Volunteer Firemen's Association's (CVVFA) Emergency Responder Safety Institute will work together to perform a study of effective recruitment and retention methods and techniques for Fire Service Traffic Control Personnel, referred to in some areas of the United States as Fire Police.

"This effort will not only illustrate an effective use of citizen volunteers to support the fire service, it will also contribute to firefighter safety," said Dickinson. "Effective roadway safety additionally supports the National Fallen Firefighters' Foundation (NFFF) Firefighter Life Safety Initiative to mitigate on-duty firefighter fatalities as firefighters have died in the line of duty from being struck by vehicles."

This study will examine the recruitment of non-active fire service response support personnel (i.e. former firefighters and other emergency responders) as well as citizen advocates, especially those that would volunteer under the Fire Corps program, and examine the effective retention of members currently serving in this role. It will also illustrate the important function currently provided by these emergency support professionals to some fire departments.

This study is supported by the Office of State and Local Government Preparedness and Coordination's Fire Corps Program. As a program partner of President George W. Bush's grass-roots initiative Citizen Corps, Fire Corps will work through local Citizen Corps Councils across the country to offer citizens education, training, and volunteer opportunities. Fire Corps is a partnership between the International Association of Fire Chiefs' Volunteer Combination Officers Section (VCOS), the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC), and the Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Fire Administration and Office of State and Local Government Preparedness and Coordination.

"Americans across the nation are helping strengthen their local fire service community through the Fire Corps program - volunteering their limited time to educate others on fire safety and fire prevention, and assisting with other non-emergency tasks," said Matt A. Mayer, Acting Executive Director for the Department of Homeland Security's Office of State and Local Government Coordination and Preparedness. "The results of this study will provide more opportunity for citizens to renew their commitment to personally helping ensure that their community is better prepared and protected against threats."

"We are pleased to work with the Department of Homeland Security Office of State and Local Government Preparedness and Coordination and the U.S. Fire Administration in support of this study." said Gene Worthington, CFFVA President. "Our organization is deeply committed to the use of citizen volunteers to enhance the safety of emergency responders operating on the roadway."

Information developed from this study will be incorporated into a detailed guide on recruitment and retention of Fire Service Traffic Control Professionals and disseminated via the Fire Corps, USFA, and CVVFA's www.ResponderSafety.com web sites. It would also illustrate would also illustrate the important function performed by these emergency support professionals currently provide to some fire departments.

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