Volunteer firefighters are vital in our area, but they’re retiring in droves and new recruits are direly needed to join the ranks. Members of the Iowa Firefighters Association plan to appeal to state lawmakers in the upcoming session to help get more people interested in volunteering. The association’s past president Jason Barrick, who serves on the Iowa Falls Fire Department, says new incentives are needed at the state and local level.
Barrick says one recruitment possibility is to try and reach young people at the high school level.
The cadet programs work, Barrick says, and he’s seen the results first-hand.
The Iowa Firefighters Association has about 15,500 members, while there are 269 volunteer firefighter departments in Iowa.