Using Inmates as Firefighters…Camden County, GA Inmate Firefighting Program is a JOKE

Felons as firefighters? We have discussed that here and here and here on

However, we aren’t talking about people who have a felony in their past this time. No, this time we are talking about current incarcerated convicts (inmates) being firefighters. And no, we aren’t talking about the convicts being a part of a wildland firefighting crew which is common out west.

We are talking about having inmates as firefighters…plain and simple.

Apparently, ladies and gentlemen…we are replaceable. Our replacement is inmates.

Why in the hell do we have such strict regulations like clean driving records, no convictions, no drug use, random drug tests…How come we are held to a higher standard only to be replaced by some inmates.

I will tell you why. We are held to a higher standard because we are firefighters. We have to be trusted by the public. We cannot afford to have our citizens worrying about whether or not they can trust us. We are firefighters…not inmates.

Let’s be clear…there are no “good” inmates. There are three types of people in this case. The ones who follow the law, the ones who don’t get caught, and convicts.

Why not hire convicts to work in City Hall?

This story comes from Camden County, Georgia:

ST. MARYS A select group of inmates may be exchanging their prison jumpsuits for firefighting gear in Camden County.

The inmates-to-firefighters program is one of several money-saving options the Board of County Commissioners is looking into to stop residents’ fire insurance costs from more than doubling. The county is also considering whether substations or a volunteer force could improve its Insurance Services Office, or ISO, rating.

The inmate firefighter program would be the most cost-effective choice, saving the county more than $500,000 a year by some estimates. But that option is already controversial, drawing criticism from the firefighters who would have to work alongside – and supervise – the prisoners.


If the program is approved, it will be open to inmates who:

– Committed only low-level crimes, such as drug offenses and thefts;

– Have a record of good behavior;

– Pass an interview process;

– Agree to not use cell phones, have visitors, or leave the station unless responding to an emergency. One violation would result in immediate removal from the program.

The inmates would not be paid for their work, but upon release they would be able to apply to work as a firefighter 5 years after their conviction dates instead of the normal 10.

I guess the firefighters in Camden County have found out what they are worth. Likewise, I guess the citizens of Camden County have found out what their supervisors think of them.

Not only do they reduce the number of ACTUAL firefighters, but now the ones they keep have to guard the inmates that the County doesn’t mind posing as firefighters.


The truth is that this program should not have even been a thought. The powers that be should have fired the idiot who came up with it…there is a cost savings measure!

Billy Goldfeder weighs in on this on The Secret List here