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CFA seeking more women

The Country Fire Authority is encouraging women to join the ranks of full-time firefighters.

June 10, 2014 3:09am

The Country Fire Authority is encouraging women to join the ranks of full-time firefighters.

While the CFA had made progress lifting the number of women who volunteer as firefighters above 20 per cent, only 22 out of the 686 career firefighters in Victoria are female.

The CFA will host a special information session for women considering the career at the CFA training college in Bangholme, Melbourne, on June 14.

Warrnambool CFA firefighter Tanya Faux is a former world-class kayaker and outdoor educator and encouraged women to explore careers that might not immediately come to mind.

‘‘Not many women think of firefighting as a possible career, even those that would be really suited to it,’’ Ms Faux said.

‘‘It’s just a matter of doing your research and understanding what it involves and what it offers.’’

The information session will give women the opportunity to try out some of the typical physical challenges involved in the firefighter application process.

Shepparton CFA operations manager Trevor Logan said there was no reason why a woman couldn’t be a firefighter.

‘‘I was in Dandenong managing a shift with one of the first female firefighters in the state and she was excellent and just blended in with the rest of us,’’ Mr Logan said.

‘‘The way I see it, if you’re in a burning building and something goes wrong, it doesn’t matter what gender you are as long as you do the job.’’

Mr Logan said there had not been a female career firefighter in Shepparton since 2005.

‘‘The guys in Shepp would welcome a female with open arms as women in stations are few and far between,’’ Mr Logan said.

CFA chief officer Euan Ferguson said the CFA needed to be more diverse.

‘‘There is a real under-representation of women in what has traditionally been a male dominated industry,’’ Mr Ferguson said.

‘‘It’s an issue which we’re determined to address.’’

To register for the information session phone 92628967.

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