Officials join together to kick-off annual firefighter recruitment drive
State and Niagara County fire officials joined elected leaders Monday at South Lockport Volunteer Fire Co. to kick-off RecruitNY 2019, as part of a statewide effort to increase volunteer firefighters.
RecruitNY is an initiative started by the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY), with the goal of increasing membership in the volunteer fire service. During RecruitNY weekend, which takes place April 27-28, volunteer fire departments across the state, open their doors to their community in an effort to educate about what it takes to become a volunteer firefighter in hopes of attracting new members.
RecruitNY received the support of Niagara County Legislature, including Legislator David Godfrey, who was one of the key speakers for the kick-off event.
“I’d like to recognize the efforts led by FASNY and our local fire companies to stress the importance of volunteer firefighters,” he said. “The volunteer fire services are the lifeblood of the community, and I encourage everyone to get involved and take part in RecruitNY,” Godfrey also chairs the Community Safety and Security Committee.
Also in attendance as a key speaker was Niagara County’s Department of Emergency Management Director Jonathon Schultz, who expressed his complete support for the RecruitNY campaign.
“I’d like to thank FASNY, South Lockport Volunteer Fire Co., and all fire companies participating in this crucial joint effort to increase volunteer firefighter membership,” he said. “I urge everyone to visit their local fire station and see what opportunities there are to actively take part in.”
Volunteer fire departments will open their doors and provide the public with what it means to be a volunteer firefighter. Prospective volunteers will have the chance to speak with active volunteer firefighters and participate in customary fire service activities. The weekend also enables citizens to better understand the role local fire departments play in protecting their communities.
In addition to protecting lives and property, volunteer firefighters save New Yorkers money. In 2016, FASNY released an economic impact report, which concluded the yearly cost of a replacement, all-paid fire service would be $3.87 billion. The volunteer fire service, and efforts like RecruitNY, make communities not only safer, but also more affordable.
Residents looking to see if their fire department is participating in RecruitNY can visit www.recruitny.org/participation-area, or they can contact their local fire department using a non-emergency phone number.