If you’re a federal wildland firefighter, you already know what I’m about to say. If you’re not, this may come as a surprise to you. The lowest paid people on a large wildfire… I’m including the kitchen help and those who are cleaning the toilets, the lowest paid personnel on the fire are likely the federal wildland firefighters. There might be some contract personnel down on that list, but for all the “hero firefighter” bs that we hear, isn’t it amazing that our firefighters are so pooly paid.
Municipal firefighters and some state firefighters can make more than twice as much as a federal wildland firefighter. And technically, the federal agencies who hire the fireghters don’t technically have any “firefighters”. The correct job title of the federal firefighters are actually “forestry technician” or “range technician”. If they were in a firefighter job title, they’d have to be paid more.
There is an organization called “Grassroots Wildland Firefighters” who are advocating for the federal wildland firefighters. This past week, their Executive Secretary testified before the Congressional Natural Resources subcomittee. Riva Duncan is a regular on my podcasts and this week we’ll be talking about the issues facing federal wildland firefighters including their pay, the correct job series (job title) and their health. Please listen and then share with all your friends and family who probably don’t understand the issues facing our dedicated and outstanding workforce.
If you go to https://www.grassrootswildlandfirefighters.com/ you can listen to Riva and watch the hearing. Thanks everyone and please leave a comment about what you heard.