“I want to thank Mike D, Mike G and my fellow panelists, for their courage, forthrightness, and professionalism in this endeavor. They rose to the occasion out of love of country, our fellow firefighters, and our noble profession. – John Alston
Join Capt. Mike Dugan (FDNY) and Capt. Mike Gagliano (Seattle Fire) for a discussion on starting a conversation about issues related to race without getting into conflict.
In particular, we will focus on the likely conversations that will occur in the treatment of the black community in our country and the fire service. To help give insight on doing so successfully, we will be speaking to:
Fire Chief John Alston, New Haven Fire Dept.
Capt. Larry Conley, St. Louis Fire Dept.
Capt. Jon M Goins Jr., Seattle Fire Dept.
Lt. Terri Reid, Baltimore County Fire Dept.
FF Mike Washington, Seattle Fire Dept.
Any perusal of the current stream of news or social media chatter makes it very clear that having conversations about racial issues can be very challenging. Events of the past few weeks make it inevitable that these conversations will be happening amongst your team in the firehouse. While we typically try to minimize these types of discussions at work, the simple fact that we live and work together makes simply ignoring or avoiding the issues impossible.
To provide some tools and tips for firefighters/company officers in how to initiate and have productive and thoughtful dialogue is the goal of our show. The more we can speak to each other in ways that create understanding, even when we strongly disagree with what is being said, the better chance we have of maintaining team unity, operational effectiveness, and relational understanding.
We are not attempting to answer the larger questions and issues being discussed in our society today. A radio show with short segments simply does not allow for the fuller development of ideas needed. But we feel hearing from some of our finest firefighters in the nation discussing how they have had success talking about these difficult areas may provide you with strategies/tactics to use in your own firehouse.