|City Administration > Public Information Office|
|Anaheim Fire Hosts Statewide Workshop On Fire Safety And Community Outreach|
ANAHEIM, CA - (February 13, 2012) - Leadership teams from six fire departments throughout the state met recently to discuss how to better meet the needs of changing cultural and age-related demographics and diverse populations in local communities in order to better respond to constituents in times of need. The two-day workshop, hosted by Anaheim Fire & Rescue, brought forth ideas and recommendations on greater community outreach and community relationship building.
The workshop was attended by fire departments from Anaheim, Los Angeles, Glendale, Rialto, Sacramento and Novato, and was sponsored by Scott Safety and facilitated by the nonprofit FIRE 20/20.
“This is a pivotal time for fire and emergency services,” said Anaheim Fire Chief Randy R. Bruegman. “The demographics of our communities are rapidly changing— a growing elderly population, multiple languages, and different cultures. We need to get ahead of the curve on this issue and make sure that our departments truly represent our communities so that we can safely and effectively respond to all situations. Simply stated, we will be a better department if we speak the languages, understand our customers’ cultures, have trusting relationships and have diverse perspectives in solving both today’s and tomorrow’s problems.”
“This workshop brought together the key stakeholders in the departments including the fire chiefs, chief officers, labor representatives, recruitment officers, minority groups, and human resources,” said Anaheim Human Resource Director Kristine Ridge. “We all need to be at the table to strategically plan how we’re going to do a better job with diversity recruitment and retention. The workshop was inspiring, informative and gave us a lot of new ideas and things to work on together.”
To continue leadership training and education, Anaheim was chosen by FIRE 20/20 as one of six cities in the nation to host a follow-up session for additional proactive planning, and will include the topics of recruiting and retaining qualified, diverse, inclusive and safety-conscience firefighters and emergency responders.
FIRE 20/20 is leading diversity and inclusion initiatives in the U.S. and Canadian fire service education, and has been gathering best recruitment and retention practices for the last seven years from fire departments across North America.
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