City Council Speaker Christine Quinn wants the FDNY to reverse its policy and let firefighters keep their outdated helmets free of charge.
Responding to a Post article, Quinn implored Fire Commissioner Sal Cassano to drop the $100 fee firefighters must pay if they want to hold onto their helmets for sentimental value when they receive their new ones every 10 years.
“As you well know, these helmets mean so much to the brave men and women who wear them,” Quinn said in her letter to Cassano. “To a firefighter, a helmet is not simply a piece of safety equipment. It is a badge of honor and a symbol of courage and selflessness.”
She said allowing them to keep the helmets for free “is just one small way New York City can thank our Bravest.”
The Post reported on a new FDNY policy requiring everyone in the 11,000-member force to turn in their headgear after 10 years as part of a drive to meet National Fire Protection Association safety standards for protective gear.
The city, which owns the gear and issues it through a $14 million annual contract, is requiring members with fewer than 20 years on the force pay $100 to keep them. Those working 20-30 years would have to pay $50 and anyone with more than 30 years in the agency would keep them free of charge.
Firefighters were fuming over the fee, insisting their helmets are a badge of honor and a symbol of their hard work and should be handed over by the city as a token of appreciation.
Republished with permission of The New York Post