Urgent call to action for the reauthorization of AFG and SAFER grants

February 19, 2024

The importance of AFG and SAFER grants for fire departments

The Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant programs are at risk of being discontinued unless Congress acts swiftly.

These grants have historically provided essential funding to fire departments across the nation, supporting training, equipment acquisition, and recruitment efforts.

A recent communication from the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) and over 30 other fire service-related organizations has highlighted the current jeopardy these programs face.

The collective effort aims to preserve the continuation of AFG and SAFER, emphasizing their vital role in enhancing the operational capabilities of fire departments.

Congressional action sought for AFG and SAFER

Representatives Mike Bost (R-IL) and Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) are spearheading a campaign to secure the reauthorization of these grants.

They have drafted a letter to the House of Representatives’ leadership, advocating for the inclusion of AFG, SAFER, and the U.S.

Fire Administration in the upcoming funding bill considered essential.

The support from a broad spectrum of Congress members is deemed essential to ensure the leadership recognizes the widespread backing for these programs.

The deadline for signing this letter is set for February 23, marking a critical juncture for the future of these grants.

How individuals can contribute to the cause

The NVFC has issued an Action Alert, urging the public to contact their Members of Congress and advocate for their support of the reauthorization initiative.

Find the action alert by clicking here.

By utilizing the NVFC’s platform, individuals can easily communicate with their representatives and encourage them to sign the letter championed by Reps. Bost and Pascrell.

Additionally, the Congressional Fire Service Institute’s AFG and SAFER landing page offers further information on how to assist in safeguarding these crucial grants.

This collective effort underscores the importance of public involvement in influencing legislative action to secure the future of fire service funding.

FSJA Comment

The call to action for the reauthorization of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grants underscores the critical need for continuous support and funding for fire departments nationwide.

These grants not only facilitate essential training and equipment purchases but also ensure that fire departments are adequately staffed to respond to emergencies effectively.

The bipartisan effort led by Representatives Mike Bost and Bill Pascrell reflects the recognition of the grants’ importance across the political spectrum.

The public’s engagement in this advocacy campaign is pivotal in demonstrating to Congress the broad support for these programs, highlighting the integral role that community involvement plays in shaping public policy.

The potential discontinuation of AFG and SAFER would mark a significant setback in the nation’s fire and emergency preparedness, making the current push for reauthorization a matter of public safety and community resilience.

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