NIFSC and the AFAC
History of the Aboriginal Firefighters Association of Canada (AFAC)
The Aboriginal Firefighters Association of Canada (AFAC) was foundedon September 19, 1991 in Portage La Prairie, MB
A group of Indigenous firefighters decided to form a National Aboriginal firefighters association. This association has worked for many years to research and raise awareness of the fire service challenges facing our Indigenous communities.
The association was established to:
- Represent the interests of these associations nationally.
- Assist in the exchange of information.
- Support the implementation of services.
- Promote national standards in fire prevention, education and suppression within Indigenous communities in Canada.
Four Priorities of AFAC
- Fire prevention.
- Advocate for legislative standards
- Fire Service operations standards.
- National coordination of fire and emergency services in Indigenous communities.
AFAC started the NIFSC with the following objectives:
- Create an Indigenous organization collaboratively developed by national and regional Indigenous bodies to serve Indigenous communities (‘for us, by us’)
- Negotiate an established and sustainable funding model for the organization
- Create a National Incident Reporting System
- Be driven by strategic priorities instead of political agendas
- Create and promote Indigenous fire service careers and certified training
- Create inclusive programs that can be subscribed to by all Indigenous communities
This strategic approach allows Indigenous communities to close the fire service gap to that of non-Indigenous communities and reach a comparable service level. To achieve these results, AFAC works in collaboration with federal and provincial governments, national fire service organizations and other Indigenous organizations.