By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer Tanya Bettridge My fire service colleague Tanya Bettridge is the Captain for Public Education at Mississauga (ON) Fire and Emergency Services. But more than that, she’s an extraordinary communicator when it comes to developing effective fire and life safety messages for the public. Here I’ve borrow a piece that she posted over on LinkedIn ...Read More »
Residential Fire Sprinkler Systems and You
As numbers of residential sprinkler systems in the country continue to grow, fire service leaders need to ensure that our fire officers and firefighters have the necessary knowledge, skills and abilities to work with these systems to effectively ensure extinguishment of the fire and effectively address property conservation, the third incident priority.Read More »
What’s wrong with this picture?
Why did it take a week for the incident to become public knowledge? More to the point, what kind of environment and culture exists at the training academy run by the West Virginia Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation (DCR) that gave everyone in that photo the “comfort level” to display one of the most recognized symbols of racism and hatred in the world for their class photograph? That’s the real question.Read More »
The Diversity “Dog Whistle” in the Fire Service
Last time I checked, it's 2019. Isn't it about time to retire the diversity "dog whistle?" Why is it that so many white males in the fire service still hear "diversity" and their Pavlovian Response is "Diversity is fine, but not at the expense of quality and competence?Read More »
What inclusiveness does, and doesn’t, look like in a fire department
By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer I’m doing research for a future article on inclusiveness. I know, I know, everyone is writing about diversity and inclusiveness in the fire services organizations. But I’m taking a different course. I want to hear real-life examples of situations where you felt inclusiveness and situation where you felt the exact opposite. I believe it’s ...Read More »
Build inclusiveness in your fire department and they will come
By: Marlene Kostyrka, Assistant Chief, Charleston (SC) Fire Department As I scroll through social media these days there seems to be a glaring issue with people skills, in the fire service. My motivation for writing this blog is a personal mission to provide information on inclusiveness and how the lack of it creates an internal risk that will take years ...Read More »
What really happened in this 911 Center?
Most 911 centers in the U.S. are chronically underfunded and understaffed. The former means that centers often don't have enough authorized positions for the workload and/or they can't afford to pay employees a salary that commensurate with the job and its responsibilities; while the latter forces employees to work involuntary overtime.Read More »
Wanna know what the cost of bullying is in a fire department?
By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer The short answer is: Human capital. I received the following message from a colleague who was a fire chief until recently. A real bright and shining star in the fire service leadership world, IMHO. I had sent this person information about a course development project for which I was seeking developers to work on. ...Read More »
How Cutting-Edge County Bought Its First SCBA Washer
Sponsored content by RESCUE Intellitech By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer Note: The story you’re about to read is true in every respect except one: There is no Cutting Edge County Fire and EMS Department. All that you’re about to read about—meetings, discussions, decisions—really took place in early August 2019. Unfortunately, the county where this all took place has a ...Read More »
Is your community “inoculated” against preventable fires?
By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer https://thesaurus.plus/img/antonyms/217/inoculate.png Well, is it? Are you and your family inoculated against preventable fires? You may think that it’s enough that you inform yourself about how to prevent fires and act to improve and protect your environment (e.g., your home or business) from a preventable fire. But you probably live in a community with other ...Read More »