In September of 1969, black and minority fire fighters of all ranks from municipalities across the United States met in New York City for two days of discussion on the injustices that exist in the following categories: The recruitment of black youth into the fire service, firefighters-community relations with special emphasis on relations with the residents of neighborhoods inhabited by blacks, inter-group relations and practices in fire departments, and the need to improve fire prevention programs in the areas of greatest need. That meeting was very productive and out of it was born the International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters. In October of 1970 the first convention of Black Professional Fire Fighters was held in Hartford, Connecticut. The constitution and the proposed structure of the International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters was adopted. To address the lack of substantial access into the Fire Service and upward mobility opportunities, it became therefore incumbent upon our membership to press for wide-scale reforms. And in the course of dealing with these problems, we expect to reduce the number of fire deaths and property loss in our respective communities and society as whole. We are convinced that the black community has an abundance of untapped talent to offer the fire service. Conversely, we expect to improve the economic development and employment opportunities for minorities. As black fire fighters, it is our challenge to make the fire service more relevant to the needs and aspirations of minority citizens. The I.A.B.P.F.F. will ensure that black and minority fire department officials become full partners in the leadership and decision-making arenas of the fire service.
Visit: The International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters
Posted By: Reggie Culpepper
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Thursday, October 20th 2011 at 7:20PM
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