Senator Vin Gopal has been appointed to serve on the newly founded Special Task Force Volunteer Retention and Recruitment.

The task force will consist of 15 members who will study and make recommendations for short-term and long-term strategies, as well as policies for the recruitment of volunteer first responders to ensure volunteer first responder ranks stabilize and grow to adequately serve the people of New Jersey. The task force will be responsible for evaluating incentives, training and recertification requirements, as well as the Length of Service Award Program for volunteer first responders.

“I am grateful to be appointed to this vital task force and I look forward to utilizing my experience as a volunteer first responder to support our volunteer departments throughout the state,” said Senator Vin Gopal.

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“The number of individuals willing to volunteer as first responders has dwindled in recent years, leaving many volunteer departments with dangerous staffing shortages. We must work to make sure our volunteer departments are properly staffed to ensure the efficacy of these departments and the safety of our first responders. I look forward to working with my fellow task force members to accomplish just that.”

The task force will produce a report on its findings and recommendations to the Governor, to the Senate President and the Assembly Speaker no later than 12 months following the date of the task force’s initial meeting and will expire upon submission of a final report.