Toledo Fire and Rescue Department boasts most diverse class ever

Published: Apr. 30, 2021 at 11:51 AM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - The brand new class at the Toledo Fire & Rescue Department’s academy is the most diverse in the department’s history. The 50 person class includes 13 women (four women of color) and 37 men, and just over half the class is non-white. A spokesperson for the department says they hope that when residents see a first responder, they see a bit of themselves.

“To be truly diverse, we need to reflect the community we serve,” says Pvt. Sterling Rahe.

According to Rahe, with better budget situations, the department can focus more on recruiting, a process that previously started just 2-3 months before a test. Now they’re using relationships to find people that can relate to those they serve.

They’re now recruiting year-round, working with schools and community organizations to find candidates. Then, they’re funneling interested candidates from all different neighborhoods and sticking with them to show them how to go through the process, mentoring them along the way.

“What is the pathway to become a Toledo Firefighter or work in public safety? A lot of folks don’t understand how to do that,” says Pvt. Rahe.

If you’re interested in learning more about becoming a Toledo Firefighter, you can learn more here.

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