About the NIFSC
for us, by us
The National Indigenous Fire Safety Council is the result of a new Indigenous developed framework designed to support Indigenous communities in development of their internal capacity to support community safety and resiliency. NIFSC is Indigenous-inspired, designed and led in collaboration with regional and national Indigenous communities, organizations and leaders.
What is the purpose of the NIFSC?
To create a national approach to fire safety in Indigenous communities. A few of the reasons that fire safety within Indigenous communities needs to be addressed are:
There is currently no national fire protection act that mandates fire safety standards or enforcement.
There is no mandated enforcement of occupational health and safety.
Houses and capital infrastructure are not subject to a national building inspection process.
The NIFSC was created by the Aboriginal Firefighters Association of Canada (AFAC)
The AFAC Board of Directors was committed to the inclusion of all Indigenous Peoples, which was central to the development of the National Indigenous Fire Safety Council (NIFSC). On April 1, 2022, the inaugural NIFSC Board of Directors was established in place of AFAC.
The governance goal of the NIFSC is to reflect all Indigenous Peoples and it will rely on the National Advisory Committee and collaboration with national Indigenous organizations to meet that goal.
AFAC started the NIFSC with the following goals:
Create a new organization through Indigenous collaboration – for us, by us.
Create an Indigenous governed organization whose structure receives sustainable funding to operate and serve FN communities.
Collaborate with existing Indigenous organizations providing support to FN communities and not accept any existing funding targeted for another Indigenous organization.
Establish standards and programs that are relevant to FN communities’ needs and (through validation) improve community safety.
Create a national reporting system that will serve to improve FN community safety.
Strategic goals and objectives are free of political influence.
Promote Indigenous fire service careers and training.
How Does the NIFSC Work?
The NIFSC is responsive, meaning as a community’s capacity increases, the programs offered will become more sophisticated.
In 2019/20, the main effort of the NIFSC was to receive input from Indigenous communities. What we heard is that change is wanted, change is needed. The NIFSC team is working to bring about that change in collaboration with communities and existing organizations. The NIFSC team continues to reach out to constituents to seek feedback on programs as they are developed.
Who is involved in the National Indigenous Fire Safety Council?
The National Indigenous Fire Safety Council is dedicated to providing Indigenous communities with the tools needed to be healthy and safe. It is made up of a team that is supported by the NIFSC Board of Directors, a National Advisory Committee (NAC), and a Technical Advisory Committee (TAC).
NIFSC Board of Directors
Assembly of First Nations - Vacant
Metis National Council - Erin Myers
Inuit Tapirit Kanatami - Vacant
FNESS - Anthony Moore
TSAG - Vacant
PAGC/SKFNEM - Michelle Vandevord
MAFC - Vacant
ONFFS - Melvin McLeod
QFNFC - Billy Moffat
NBNFA - Allan Peters
Yukon - James Smarch
Wildfire - Ashley O-Neil
NIFSC Executive Director - (Interim) - Anthony Moore
Technical Advisory Committee
The role of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) is to provide the NIFSC team with technical advice on the development and delivery of fire safety programs. It is made up of professionals working in the fire safety industry. The role of the advisory committee is to support the establishment of national indigenous fire service standards, support the direction and parameters of research, identify emerging public safety issues and provide a national forum for Indigenous fire service to collaborate and share information. The TAC is the first forum that allows all Indigenous fire service organizations to collaborate.
TAC Standing Organizational Members:
First Nations Emergency Services Society
First Nations Technical Services Advisory Group Inc. (Alberta)
Saskatchewan First Nations Emergency Management & Protective Services
Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation
First Nations National Building Officers Association
Nunavut Fire Marshal
Assembly of First Nations
National Indigenous Fire Safety Council