The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) Board of Directors met in Concord, NC, on October 21-23, 2015. Representatives from 40 state associations attended, including Steve McClintock from Nevada State Firefighters Association.
The NVFC serves as the voice of the over 800,000 volunteer fire, EMS, and rescue personnel in the U.S. The organization provides advocacy, resources, education, and programs to help the volunteer fire and emergency services thrive. The NVFC board is comprised of up to two representatives from 48 state fire associations and meets as a whole twice a year to conduct Council business and address key issues in the nation’s fire and emergency services. There were 41 States represented at the meeting in North Carolina.
Below are highlights from the 2015 fall meeting.
The NVFC board focused on the future of the NVFC with a strategic planning session that included updating the goals for the future of the organization. In addition, the board discussed refreshing the NVFC’s logo in conjunction with the Council’s 40th anniversary celebration in 2016.
Recruitment and Retention
Thanks to support from a federal SAFER grant, the NVFC is launching a nationwide volunteer firefighter recruitment and retention campaign. Departments can go to http://portal.nvfc.org to post their volunteer opportunities, create customized recruitment materials, and access additional tools for recruiting new members. The public can go to www.MakeMeAFirefighter.org to find local volunteer opportunities and learn more about the fire and emergency services.
Shell Pipeline Company LP has partnered with the NVFC to promote the campaign to the NASCAR audience. The No. 22 Shell Pennzoil Ford Fusion featured the campaign logo on its deck lid at the Federated Auto Parts 400 Sprint Cup Series Race at Richmond International Raceway in September, and driver Joey Logano is recording a PSA to let the public know about the campaign.
During the fall meeting, Logano and representatives from Shell presented the deck lid to the NVFC board. Shell also provided an update on pipeline safety initiatives.
In addition, the board attended a pilot course on increasing diversity in the fire service, which is one of several courses being developed as part of the recruitment and retention campaign.
Many of the NVFC’s Committees met to address key emergency service issues, including the inaugural meeting of the NVFC’s new Hazmat Response Committee. The EMS/Rescue Section and the NVFC Foundation board also met. Steve McClintock Chaired the Conference Committee as well as Vice Chair of the Wild Land Committee. The big topic of discussion was Cancer and the Fire Service. It was brought to our attention there are some guidelines for cancer prevention in the Structure Fire arena. There seems there are not any guidelines for Wild Land Fire. With this being said. Chairman of the Wild Land committee Ron Roy from Washington and Vice Chair Steve McClintock from Nevada are teaming up with NFPA to set some guidelines for Cancer prevention in the Wild Land arena.
The board participated in a facility tour at Minerva Bunker Gear Cleaners in Charlotte, which included a presentation by a representative from the Firefighter Cancer Support Network. Firefighter cancer awareness and prevention are a priority for the NVFC, and proper cleaning of gear is a critical component of this. The Council passed three resolutions regarding proper PPE storage and cleaning as well as establishing a Task Force to combat the cancer issue.
Additional presentations included Dr. Rebecca Gimenez and John Haven from Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue during the general session, William Deas of the DHS Infrastructure Security Compliance Division during the Hazmat Response Committee meeting, and Red Grasso of First Net during the Radio/Wireless Committee meeting. The North Carolina State Firemen’s Association also hosted dinners at Hendrick Racing and the Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The NVFC thanks our meeting host, the North Carolina State Firemen’s Association, and its partners as well as all of the meeting sponsors: American Addiction Centers, California Casualty, ESIP, Minerva Bunker Gear Cleaners, the National Fire Protection Association, The Pennsylvania Fireman, Penn Well Fire Group, Provident, Scott Safety, and Shell Pipeline Company LP.
Find more information about the NVFC fall meeting at www.nvfc.org. A post-meeting highlight video will also be available on the NVFC web site soon. The next board meeting will take place May 6-7, 2016, in Alexandria, VA.