GADSDEN, AL (WBRC) - Gadsden’s fire department is looking for a few good men and women to work as firefighters.
Chief Steve Carroll says his fire department is about eight certified firefighters short of having a full staff.
Recently, he’s been attending job fairs but says he’s been having trouble finding people who want to work as a career firefighter. Or they stay in Gadsden just long enough to be trained and then work somewhere else, or even in another line of work.
Carroll says he plans to start a career tech program next year at Gadsden City High School.
The training for high school seniors at that level would be enough to be certified as a volunteer firefighter.
“We hope that, that course in itself will get us more candidates that we can recruit and retain, after the end of the school year when they come out with the certification as a volunteer firefighter,” says Carroll, “and we can expand that and roll them over into another bridge program to get them to the career firefighter level and retain them here in the city of Gadsden.”
That first class already has some 20 students enrolled.
During a meeting of the city council’s public safety committee, council member Thomas Worthy, a retired Gadsden police officer, said he thought he’d never see the day Chief Carroll would have to work so hard to recruit for his department.