How diverse is Toronto’s fire department?

Toronto's fire department is under increased pressure to become more diverse.
Some councillors say the city's fire service is not as diverse as it needs to be. 2:54

Toronto's fire department is under increased pressure to become more diverse.

Historically, the face of Toronto Fire has been predominantly white and male.

Last year, the city's fire chief estimated that the number of visible minorities within the department was about two per cent.

At that time, the fire chief couldn't give an exact number and that remains a problem for many councillors.

"We don't have enough information to know the exact ethnic, cultural and racial breakdown of their workforce — that being said, we must do better," Coun. James Pasternak said Monday.

City councillors moved a motion Monday asking the department to set diversity targets.

Frank Ramagnano, the president of the Toronto Professional Fire Fighters' Association admits that the department can improve the diversity within its ranks.

"Are we where we should be for the makeup of our city? Probably not. But will we be there in 20 or 30 years from now? Yes," he said.

Click on the video to see a full report from the CBC's Jamie Strashin.


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