I don’t have to tell you – uncertainty, displacement, and disruption are by no means a new phenomenon in the fire service profession. The communities you serve rely heavily on you to “keep them together.” It’s your job as a part of your daily duty to minimize this as best you can. We are now facing a global pandemic – but while the COVID-19 public health crisis is new to us and the full impacts are unknown, keep in mind that the way you all respond is not that new or unknown – it’s an extension of your day-to-day role: to keep your communities safe by providing services, support and continuity of operations as best you can. You know how to do this!
While we understand disruption from our professional perspective, now we are simultaneously challenged with significant instability in our own lives as well – as caregivers, neighbors, community members, and coworkers. While it will be challenging, you are not alone.
ISFSI is here to support you. We recognize this public health crisis places a further strain on an already taxed profession and creates a tangle of safety, wellbeing, and prioritization. We also recognize that sharing knowledge, resources and experiences is paramount to addressing and minimizing the impacts on you and the profession.
ISFSI is working swiftly to infuse the site with resources and support for our members. We invite our members to share information about the impact of the coronavirus on your department and your community so that we can generate and mobilize resources responsive to your needs. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to share information, concerns and resources. For those wishing to reach out to me directly I provide you my personal cell phone (804) 994-3526.
At ISFSI, you are our purpose! Our staff is largely working remotely, but we have the tools and technology to build community and support you. This moment is a test to our professions ability to mobilize, support one another, keep ourselves healthy, and elevate the needs of the communities we serve. By promoting community and collaboration, brainstorming and sharing resources, and participation in open and honest dialogues, we can help mitigate some of the uncertainly for ourselves.
I am forever in your service,
Executive Director ISFSI