In an effort to improve emergency response, the Gadsden-Etowah County Emergency Management Agency is holding free training classes for citizens next year, and sign-up is open.
These classes are the result of a Department of Homeland Security and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency grant that was recently awarded to the Gadsden-Etowah EMA.
"At times, civilians may be the first to arrive on the scene of any given emergency, so offering this training to Gadsden area residents is important to help the community be better prepared for disaster," said Gadsden mayor Craig Ford. "This grant funding is targeted to serve low-income and otherwise historically underrepresented areas of the community. Without the pursuit and awarding of this grant, this public safety training opportunity may not be possible."
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program aims to train and equip residents to react until professional responders can arrive. The training consists of basic first aid, basic fire suppression, emergency search and rescue, cribbing and leveraging techniques, and more. Instructors include Gadsden Fire Chief Wil Reed, EMA staff members and others from the emergency response sector within the city.
Classes will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. February 7, 9, 16, 21, 23, 28 and March 2 and 4, 2023. Participants must attend all eight classes for completion of the course. Training will be held at 4610 Airport Rd., Gadsden.
To sign up or for information about holding specialized training in your community, email firstname.lastname@example.org . You can also call 256-549-4575 with questions.