I received a notice recently about first responder training being offered in my community sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security. The course, AWR 147: Rail Car Incident Response, is an eight-hour, awareness level course developed to educate rural emergency responders on freight rail car incidents involving hazardous materials.
Looking over the agenda, I realized that much of the information in the course is contained in the 2016 Emergency Response Guide published by the U. S. Department of Transportation. I downloaded it for free onto my cell phone. No top-secret information needing a security clearance is going to be revealed.
What really irked me was the only prerequisite: U.S. Citizenship.
The poster did have the following caveat: *Please note all foreign nationals need to complete a DHS Foreign National Visitor Request Form by September 16,
The reality of firefighters/first responders across the country is that the vast majority of them are volunteers. According to FEMA’s U.S. Fire Administration, of the ninety-one percent of the nation’s fire departments registered with the agency, seventy-one percent are
So, in order to protect our communities and get better at doing our unpaid jobs by sitting in an eight-hour training (unpaid), we have to prove we’re citizens? And if not a citizen, we are forced to jump through hoops to attend?
Give me a break. Give volunteers across America a break.