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|| Canadian Fire Service: governmental affairs committee By Bruce Whitehouse, Chair [September 18, 2007] Following on the model of the hugely successful FAMA/FEMSA GAC, Canadian members of FAMA and FEMSA have initiated a Canadian version named Canadian Fire Service: governmental affairs committee, or CFS:gac. The CFS:gac will operate under the direction and guidance of the FAMA and FEMSA Boards of Directors, and in order to participate in the process, companies and associations in Canada must be members of the appropriate organization (FAMA or FEMSA). Just as in the US, it is common knowledge that Canadian fire departments need more and better funding if they are to succeed in their mission of being first responders. In fact, the Canadian need may be greater – a much smaller population spread across a much larger land mass makes it more difficult to fund, train and equip fire departments. We have all seen numbers from a recent study showing that emergency responses have increased by 40% in the last 10 years. Further, the same study has shown the number of fire service accidents, injuries and fatalities has declined substantially. Training, better equipment and more NFPA compliant fire apparatus are all credited with saving lives and helping to make the fire service more efficient. But the majority of US and Canadian municipalities continue to be protected by under-funded departments using apparatus and equipment that are more than 15 years old. Since 2001, the GAC has been instrumental in encouraging the US Congress and Senate for over $3.3 Billion US to purchase new equipment, update fire apparatus and for improved training. The 2007 appropriations alone total more than $1 Billion US. In recognition that the Canadian fire service is in need of similar funding

streams so that it can continue to service communities and industries, the Canadian version was launched in May of this year as a subcommittee of the FAMA/FEMSA Governmental Affairs Committee. Comprised of fire service industry representatives including apparatus and component manufacturers, equipment suppliers plus fire service personnel, the CFS:gac is aiming high. Based on the outstanding success of the US efforts, but in keeping with the different funding streams, the Committee is targeting to increase fire service funding levels to $100 Million nationwide each year. An information session at the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs Conference in May, an informal presence at the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs (CAFC) board meeting in June and a formal presentation to the Maritime Association of Fire Chiefs (MAFC) has resulted in both the CAFC and the MAFC pledging support to the Committee. September will bring a presentation to the full CAFC Board at the Fire Rescue Canada Conference to be held in Niagara Falls. Appropriately titled “Thundering into the Future”, the board presentation will give the nation’s fire service leaders a glimpse of what can be accomplished and of what future funding successes could do for the industry. In addition, more representation from the firefighters is being sought; career, union and non-union, plus volunteers. The frontline first responders can provide a hands-on perspective for the operational needs of the fire service. Although there is a long road ahead, with much work to be done, the CFS: gac is hopeful that a coordinated and focused effort will ultimately result in dramatically increased funding from all levels of government and a corresponding improvement in fire service safety and response ability. For additional information, see www.fama.org, www.femsa.org, www.famafemsagac, and www.firegrantdata.com. Inquiries regarding membership may be emailed to info@fama.org or info@femsa.org. ■

|| FAMA Members on the Trade Show Circuit

Below: David Clark Company

Below: Don Wilson, Sales Engineer, Intellitec Below: Sandra and Randy Vandersee from Duo Safety

Above: Tim Thuemling of Thuemling Instrument Group with Bob Bowen (rep from Dixie Marketing)

www.fama.org

Fall 2007

Continued on page 9 7

FAMA Flyer Fall 2007  

FAMA Flyer Fall 2007

FAMA Flyer Fall 2007  

FAMA Flyer Fall 2007

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