The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, March 7, approved a policy package intended to increase diversity in the county fire department, particularly regarding women and people of color.
The motion, introduced by Supervisors Janice Hahn and Holly Mitchell, was written in conjunction with firefighters’ union Local 1014, the Women’s Fire League and the Stentorians, which represents African American L.A. County firefighters.
“This motion is a roadmap for how we are going to hire more women and people of color in the L.A. County Fire Department,” Hahn said in a statement. “That starts with breaking down barriers to becoming a firefighter, a paramedic, or a lifeguard, but also means addressing the reasons women and people of color leave the profession.”
Said Mitchell: “It’s hard enough to have to fight a fire without their having to fight for belonging.”
County Fire Chief Anthony Marrone, recently promoted from acting chief, attended Tuesday’s meeting and said he “expected to learn much” from the proposed changes. Specifically, the motion directs the department to work with Local 1014 to adopt different written exams for firefighters and paramedics that are based on equity research and include recruitment and mentorship programs. The motion also directs the department to provide a plan to ensure that preparatory academies and programs conducted through the Women’s Fire League and Stentorians remain financially accessible.
In addition, it directs the department to create a labor-management Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee that will include members from underrepresented groups, including women, people of color, and LGBTQ individuals.
“It is my hope that this motion reaffirms L.A. County Fire’s commitment to creating a pipeline of leadership that is diverse and inclusive,” said Mitchell.
3 comments for "Supervisors OK plan to improve diversity in LA County Fire Department"
Bo Ament says
This isn’t a diversity plan. This is purely discrimination. The BOS is destroying the county one dept at a time. I worked for LACounty fire for 37 years. I watched and experienced the Seta program and affirmative action not work and only discriminate against Caucasian males whether it be for hiring or promoting. If you were to speak out against it, you were called a racist or sexist. Lowering the standards will only cause problems and put firefighters and the public in danger. This is sad and shameful.
John Orr says
I thought the fire department was already 80% LGBTQ. What we really need is Rainbow Flags on all LA County Fire trucks.
and then there’s this:
Firefighter Hiring Quotas Ended
By DAVID ROSENZWEIG
April 9, 2002 12 AM PT
Be careful what you wish for… says
Good Lord!!! This BOS is hell-bent on destroying the county! They are wanting to eliminate any criminal history from job applications. The mayor flat out said they would be reducing standards and requirements for hiring, which is what the BOS is proposing here. This is affirmative action, which I thought is illegal. The county is going to resemble the third world countries all these people are leaving—crime, poor quality low educated workers, corruption, etc., etc. The public schools are destroyed because there’s no academic or behavioral accountability. It’s such a disheartening thing to witness the downward spiral of this state.