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Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment and Retention in Rural Pennsylvania

This report is based on a literature review, surveys of senior-level fire officials in 32 states and fire chiefs in rural Pennsylvania, and surveys of rural Pennsylvania firefighters. The analysis concludes that recruitment and retention of volunteer firefighters is a problem across the United States and not unique to rural Pennsylvania.

The results indicated that rural volunteer firefighters are more likely to join their local fire company because of their commitment to community and their families' connection to the fire company. The results also showed that financial benefits may play only a small role in motivating people to volunteer and remain active.

Literature Review

  • A Brief History of Volunteer Firefighting
  • Declining Volunteers
  • Today’s Volunteer Fire Companies
  • Benefits Provided to Volunteer Firefighters

Survey of State Fire Officials

  • Current Critical Issues
  • Firefighter Training
  • Recognition
  • Volunteer Firefighter Incentive Benefits
  • Retention
  • Recruitment
  • Conclusion

Pennsylvania Volunteer Fire Companies

  • Fire Chief Interviews
  • Survey of Volunteer Firefighters


Policy Considerations

Source: The Center for Rural Pennsylvania

  • Topics:
    • Retention2
    • Recruitment2
    • Retention
    • Recruitment
  • Resource Type:
    • Report/ publication
  • Organizational Author:
    • External

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