Wanted: Volunteer Firefighters   

Monticello, NY – RecruitNY, a major initiative of the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY) supported by the Sullivan County Office of Emergency Management and Bureau of Fire, is rapidly approaching. This weekend, April 28-29, firehouses across the State will open their doors to the public in an effort to increase membership in the volunteer fire service. This will be the eighth straight year of this recruitment initiative, a cornerstone of FASNY’s ongoing recruitment campaign.
 
During the April 28-29 weekend, members of the public will be able to get a taste of what it means to be a volunteer firefighter. Here in Sullivan County, volunteer firefighters will be conducting firehouse tours, demonstrating firefighting techniques, and more, all to generate interest and appreciation for what members of the fire service do on a regular basis. Anyone interested in the possibility of joining the fire service will have the opportunity to speak with active volunteers, who can discuss what being a member of the fire service entails.
 
The following local departments are hosting open houses this weekend:
• April 28, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.: Callicoon Volunteer Fire Department, 9305 State Route 97, Callicoon, 845-887-4233
• April 28, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.: Forestburgh Fire Company #1, 2539 NYS Route 42, Forestburgh, 845-794-7899
• April 28, 12-3 p.m.: Grahamsville Fire Department, 205 Main St, Grahamsville, 845-985-2260
• April 28, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.: Highland Lake Fire Department, 144 Highland Lake Rd., Highland Lake, 845-557-8788 
• April 29, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.: Mountaindale Fire Department, 132 Main Street, Mountaindale, 845-798-6420
“The volunteer fire service has a long, proud heritage in New York, and is deeply integrated into the social fabric of Sullivan County,” said District 5 Legislator Terri Ward, chair of the Sullivan County Legislature’s Public Safety Committee. “Volunteer fire departments not only answer emergency calls, but they serve as the backbones of our communities, hosting events we all love such as parades and pancake breakfasts, and providing common space for people to gather. The volunteer fire service’s economic impact is also substantial.”
 
Volunteer firefighters save New Yorkers money. In 2016, FASNY released an economic impact report, which concluded that the annual cost of a replacement, all-paid fire service would be $3.87 billion. Furthermore, property taxes in New York State would rise by an estimated average of 26.5%. These figures do not factor in the costs of acquiring the necessary facilities and equipment needed to accommodate a paid fire service. The volunteer fire service, and efforts like RecruitNY, make the State not only safer, but also more affordable.
 
Established in 2011, RecruitNY is a joint undertaking by the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY), the New York State Association of Fire Chiefs (NYSAFC), Association of Fire Districts of New York State, Volunteer Fire Police Association of the State of New York, and County Fire Coordinators Association of the State of New York.
 
For area residents looking to find if your fire department is participating in RecruitNY, visit http://www.recruitny.org/participation-area/ or for more information, contact your local fire department via a non-emergency phone number or its website or visit www.recruitny.org.

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