Book challenging gender roles in emergency services hailed as ‘incredible’
A children’s book challenging gender roles in the emergency services has been described as “incredible” by a female firefighter.
My Mummy Is A Firefighter is the seventh in a series of books encouraging girls to pursue careers in traditionally male-dominated fields, including science and the military.
Currently, the London Fire Brigade reports that 300 out of its 5,000 firefighters are women, making up 7% of its workforce.
Fran Flin, a firefighter on Orpington Blue Watch, who has been in the profession for 26 years, said: “The book is incredible. I love the theme. I’ve said before about educating our children to say ‘firefighter’ instead of ‘fireman’, and having a book like this on the shelves in school libraries will help the process of change.
“One day very soon, I believe we will have succeeded in changing perceptions of the fire service. I genuinely believe we are almost there.”
Keeley Foster, deputy assistant commissioner at London Fire Brigade, said: “The fire service, much like any public service, needs to reflect the diversity of the society it serves.
“Modern firefighting is much more than just putting out fires, blue lights and sirens.
“It’s a varied role and there are many career paths that can be pursued within the organisation – from fire prevention work within the community, to specialist rescue skills and working on our fire investigations team.
“We haven’t used the term ‘fireman’ in 30 years. It reinforces the misconception that only men can do the job of a firefighter.
“Our partnership with Butterfly Books will see My Mummy Is A Firefighter sparking children’s imaginations by showing just how many exciting jobs there are for women within the fire brigade.”
The book release comes as the London Fire Brigade continues its #FirefightingSexism campaign to attract more women to the fire service.