ACT Rural Fire Service Chief Officer Rohan Scott with Mike Gentleman MLA and ACTESA Commissioner Georgeina Whelan. File image.

Firefighting volunteers and staff from ACT emergency services will today be recognised for their ongoing commitment to keeping Canberra safe.

Named after the Patron Saint of firefighters, St Florian’s Day on 4 May is also known as International Firefighters Day, honouring the volunteers and staff who have shown incredible acts of bravery in protecting the community, or delivering the highest level of commitment that is worthy of special recognition.

Last year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ACT emergency services were unable to gather to mark the day.

Minister for Police and Emergency Services Mick Gentleman said the St Florian’s Day ceremony acknowledges the hard work our service personnel do day in, day out, all year round.

“Sadly, seven firefighters lost their lives during the 2019-20 bushfire season while protecting communities around Australia,” Minister Gentleman said.

“St Florian’s Day, named for the Patron Saint of firefighters, is a time for communities to come together to recognise firefighting volunteers and staff who have gone above and beyond, showing incredible acts of bravery in protecting the community.

“I will be joining today’s ceremony to thank the families, friends and employers of our hard-working volunteers and staff. We understand that behind our personnel is a whole team of people supporting them.”

ACT Emergency Services Agency (ACTESA) Commissioner Georgeina Whelan said our emergency services personnel went above and beyond the call of duty in their line of work every day.

“My wish is that at the end of every shift, all firefighters get to go home safely. We thank our emergency service personnel for their ongoing dedication and commitment to ensure the Canberra community is cared for and protected,” Commissioner Whelan said.

The Australian War Memorial will this afternoon be holding a ceremony for ACT Fire & Rescue, ACT Rural Fire Service and ACT Parks and Conservation firefighters to recognise the distinguished service they provide to our community.

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