For several years, United Women Firefighters, a group of women firefighters working in the Fire Department of New York (FDNY), has partnered with New York Sports Clubs (NYSC) to provide a specialized training program for any woman interested in being a firefighter in the FDNY. To celebrate the impact it’s had on increasing the number of women firefighters in NYC to a historical high, United Women Firefighters is inviting young women (ages 17-28) to train like a firefighter at the program’s new home during a special event on Wednesday, August 3rd.
“The FDNY has the worst gender disparity out of all the major cities of the United States at less than 0.5%.”
The UWF Training Program first started in 2003 at NYSC’s Wall Street location, which was used as a comfort station in the days following the devastation of 9/11, and is now run out of the NYSC fitness center near City Hall at 217 Broadway. Led by women firefighters and using firefighting and Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) equipment, the program is designed to help identify an individual’s strengths and weaknesses so she can improve and be in the best position to pass all the physical requirements needed to get into the fire academy and ultimately on the job. It’s also a place where women can have their questions answered about the process of getting hired and/or about what it’s like to be a woman firefighter in NYC.
According to United Women Firefighters, “The FDNY has the worst gender disparity out of all the major cities of the United States at less than 0.5%. However, through this training program, women firefighters and officers are now at a historical high of 52.” The next FDNY firefighter exam is slated for the Spring of 2017, so the group hopes “to usher in many more young women candidates into this training program and into the fire academy” as they strive to be “leaders in increasing the numbers of women firefighters.”
What’s sure to be an incredible showcase of bravery and sisterhood, next week’s celebratory event will include women firefighters, women firefighter candidates, fire officials, past and present trainers and many more who have been touched by the United Women Firefighters Training Program. Attendees will engage in a “fun workout”, watch training demos, and get their hands on hoses, dummies and other real firefighting equipment.
For more information on the August 3rd event, email Sarinya Srisakul, President United Women Firefighters. No RSVP is necessary to attend.