Brooklyn Center Hiring Paid Part-Time Firefighters
Recruiting and retaining firefighters continues to be a challenge for some local fire departments, like Brooklyn Center.
Brooklyn Center Fire Chief Todd Berg said there have been fewer volunteer firefighters because the job is so demanding. So the department has added paid part-time positions to attract applicants.
Berg said the department will pay for the training. Plus, on-call firefighters will get a wage to go to school.
“Within the last 5 to 10 years, our department was primarily a volunteer fire department. The only pay you got was when you stood duty shifts at the fire station and a pension. You didn’t get paid anything to come to calls or anything like that,” said Berg.
Berg said the department gets two opportunities a year to send people to schooling to get trained in as a paid on-call firefighter.
Brooklyn Center Firefighters like Family
“It’s a very rewarding experience, giving back to community that you lived in, maybe grew up in. There’s satisfaction in helping people in your community probably at some of the worst times in their life,” Berg said. “Being a part of a fire department is being part of a second family.”
The National Fire Protection Association’s last report found that the number of volunteer firefighters in 2017 was at its lowest since 1986. The report shows that while volunteer firefighters declined, the number of career or full-time firefighters increased across the country.