I am currently an Assistant Chief with the Elmont Fire Department, I would like to clear the air and get some facts out to you.
The past few days any logo with the rebel flag or anything close to it has started to be removed from anything related to the Elmont FD. The flag in the back room has been removed and the truck logo will be removed ASAP as soon as the artist can remove it.
The Elmont FD, and the members of Engine 3 are not racist, nor do we discriminate against any race or religion. Our membership stands at about 174 and of that 62 are Black, Hispanic or one of the many other races of peoples that make Elmont the melting pot community that it is. There are 8 compnaies in the Elmont FD, all have Black members. Are some of us guilty of not truly understanding how offensive and hurtful this image is to the community, yes, and shame on us for that. Are we trying to entice a racist point of view absolutley not.
Sometimes we may be blinded by history, traditions, and taking for granted what was already in place before we got there, as OK and no big deal. Despite what some of you may think, we do care. The Board of Fire Commissioners and the Chiefs have been speaking to our Black Brother firefighters and hearing what they have to say. Personally I have spoken to Brother firefighters from 2 companies in my own firehouse, and discussed many things, things I know I can's possibly understand, unless I walk in their shoes, and I can never do that.
The Chiefs Office will continue to speak to our Brother firefighters to see if we need to look at other things as well. We will do what is needed to make this right.
Make no mistake when the alarm bell sounds we will be there for YOU! Despite some of the passionate responses here, deep down, I know no one ever doubts that. That said we exsist to serve you, the public, not offend you.
Our doors are always open for new members. Stop by one of the firehouses any Sunday morning from 10-12pm.