Public Safety Workforce Blogs

6 Steps Fire/EMS Can Take with Fewer Volunteers During COVID-19

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Sep 24, 2020 10:55:11 AM

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a tremendous impact on first responders. Not only has it created a new normal that’s changed the way fire and EMS agencies operate, but it’s also left agencies short on volunteers as people take time off to quarantine or recover from illness. Many past volunteers are now unavailable: some are caring for sick family members; some are minimizing exposure to protect their health or that of loved ones who are at higher risk; and some have full-time jobs that currently prohibit them from doing volunteer work in order to minimize the exposure of other staff members. In the face of the volunteer shortage, what can agencies do to ensure they continue meeting public safety needs? 

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Topics: Workforce Management, EMS, Firefighters, COVID-19

Evolving Technology for Public Safety’s Unprecedented Scheduling Needs

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Sep 2, 2020 6:14:40 PM

In a year of on-the-job dangers posed by a viral pandemic and civil unrest, public safety agencies nationwide are going through massive change. With officers, firefighters and EMS personnel working in extremely volatile situations, many agencies have the added stress of staffing shortages. Some vacancies are caused by the fatigue of managing civil acts of violence. Others are due to employees testing positive for or being exposed to COVID-19.

The inability to back fill vacancies with qualified personnel and equipment is not an option. Scheduling and managing a workforce with these concerns in mind is tough using Excel spreadsheets. Many agencies have adjusted their practices and are relying on technology to effectively manage the safety of their personnel.

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Topics: Workforce Management, Scheduling, EMS, Firefighters, Analytics, COVID-19

Preparing Fire & Rescue for the Workforce Challenges Ahead

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Aug 14, 2020 12:37:51 PM

 

When emergency situations strike, the world relies on first responders to help. But what happens when the Fire and Rescue workforce is adapting to the unknown? Global issues like the COVID-19 pandemic have shone a light on workforce challenges that won't be going away anytime soon.  It's crucial to understand what to look for and how to plan for the road ahead. 

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Topics: Workforce Management, Scheduling, EMS, Firefighters, Analytics, COVID-19

Instilling, developing and monitoring professionalism in firefighter crews [Video]

Posted by Jackie Belasky

May 29, 2019 10:07:54 AM

Officers within fire departments should have high expectations of professionalism and responsibility from the members of their crews. Setting and maintaining these standards can help personnel individually and assist the department in protecting its community.

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Topics: Firefighters

Disaster countermeasures involve mass EMS cooperation [Video]

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Apr 22, 2019 11:08:33 AM

When a natural disaster strikes, it's common for first responders to cooperate with personnel from other departments, rushing aid to where it's most needed. For example, the recent response to Hurricane Florence drew specialized assistance from EMS crews from up and down the East Coast.

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Topics: EMS, Police, Firefighters

New Response Strategies Prepare EMS for Active Shooter Incidents [Video]

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Oct 29, 2018 2:52:51 PM

The role of emergency medical professionals in active shooter incidents is critical - but also dangerous. The National Fire Protection Association recently unveiled a nationwide standard to help all first responders safely execute their roles in such a situation.

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Topics: EMS, Police, Firefighters

Incident Action Plans Help Firefighters Battle Forest Fires [Video]

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Oct 15, 2018 11:57:56 AM

Fighting forest fires is a dangerous but essential part of firefighting in rural areas. When departments prepare and set high-level strategic guidelines, they can improve their effectiveness at battling the blazes and improve the chances that everyone gets back safely.

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Topics: Firefighters

Let's Focus on Recognizing Stress in Our Firefighters [Video]

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Sep 10, 2018 10:16:22 AM

Letting stress go unnoticed or unmanaged within a fire department workforce can lead to problems over time. Psychological trauma leaves invisible scars, so recognizing it isn't always easy. Firefighter supervisors have to work hard to ensure their team members' mental health needs are being met.

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Topics: Firefighters

Ways to reduce the firefighting gender gap [Video]

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Aug 3, 2018 9:31:35 AM

Fire departments have a serious gender disparity. Only about 7 percent of American firefighters are women. Departments that take action to close this hiring gap can promote fairness and opportunity, improve community engagement and reach optimal staffing levels.

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Topics: Firefighters

Resources needed for firefighter mental health programs [Video]

Posted by Jackie Belasky

Jul 23, 2018 11:03:14 AM

Training and assistance programs designed to keep firefighters fit and healthy shouldn't exclude mental health from their focus areas. Post-traumatic stress and other serious conditions can seriously affect first responders, and departmental leaders should set aside the time and resources to help their teams.

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Topics: Firefighters