New Orleans mayor mulls combining city's fire, EMS services

“It’s time we really take a hard look at trying to integrate EMS and the Fire Department,” said Aaron Mischler, New Orleans Fire Fighters Association president


By Leila Merrill

NEW ORLEANS — Mayor LaToya Cantrell said last week that she is thinking about combining the New Orleans Fire Department and New Orleans EMS, the Lens reported.

While the New Orleans Fire Fighters Association has voiced support for the idea in the past, a spokesperson for the EMS department was surprised to hear of the idea.

EMS spokesman Jonathon Fourcade said,
EMS spokesman Jonathon Fourcade said, "we really don’t have any knowledge of EMS and Fire consolidating.” (Photo/ New Orleans Emergency Medical Services)

“Honestly this is the first I’m hearing of this,” EMS spokesman Jonathon Fourcade told The Lens. “Just for the record, we really don’t have any knowledge of EMS and Fire consolidating.”

Last week, during a meeting about city revenue, Aaron Mischler, president of the New Orleans Fire Fighters Association, brought up the idea of the fire department absorbing EMS.

“I believe it’s time we really take a hard look at trying to integrate EMS and the Fire Department together,” he said. “I believe utilizing the manpower from the fire department and combining the two departments would lower the budget for both departments and remove redundancies,” he said.

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