PA lawmaker looks to fill firefighter void with ex-convicts

02.06.18 | Terry Diener

State Senator Dan Laughlin’s proposal would train non-violent criminals to become volunteer firefighters after they’re released from prison, something California is already doing.

The senator wants inmates trained in prison so they’re ready to work once they’re released. He says his plan would help lower the recidivism rate and also help fill the need for firefighters.

The number of volunteer firefighters in Pennsylvania has dropped dramatically, from 300,000 in the 1970s to 50,000 today.