- Sunday, 7 March 2021 at 10:32 pm
Deputy Commissioner Michelle Young said it was great to see women in operational firefighting roles across Victoria, and confirmed that the organisation remained focused on attracting and recruiting diverse candidates.
“When you put on a uniform you shouldn’t be in a minority – we need to reflect the community we serve,” Deputy Commissioner Young said.
“It’s no secret that firefighting is a traditionally male-dominated industry but we’re committed to changing the stereotypes and making our profession more equitable.”
“Approximately 16% of firefighter recruit applications were from women during the last intake, which was a 3% increase on the previous year, and we are looking for more applicants”, Deputy Commissioner Young said.
The first three women firefighters started their careers with the fire and rescue services in Victoria in 1988. Since then, initiatives to encourage more women to apply including women’s support coordinators, who work on policies including pregnancy and breastfeeding policy and work alongside recruitment, and specialised fitness training programs have been implemented.
With firefighter recruitment applications set to open later this year, Deputy Commissioner Young said there is plenty of time to start preparing and training for a new career in the fire and rescue services.
“We’ve created training videos and resources that people can use to prepare for the physical assessments, and I’d strongly encourage anyone interested in becoming a firefighter to access these,” Deputy Commissioner Young said.
“You can’t be what you can’t see. We want to show women and people from all walks of life that no matter what their current profession, firefighting is something they can do, and can do incredibly well.
“We hope women and people from diverse backgrounds will take up the challenge and in turn, help us change the stereotypes, minds and behaviours of the communities we serve,” Deputy Commissioner Young said.
Recruitment for firefighting positions will open later this year, and updates on recruitment as well as preparation resources are available at www.firefighter.vic.gov.au.