Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

September 30, 2010 11:00 ET

Government of Canada Launches Fire Prevention Week 2010

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 30, 2010) - Today, the Honourable Lisa Raitt, Canada's Minister of Labour, reminded Canadians to protect themselves from preventable fires by participating in the official launch of Fire Prevention Week.

"Due to increased education and prevention, fewer fire losses are being reported in Canada, but we must continue to have up-to-date fire safety measures," said Minister Raitt. "The Government of Canada encourages Canadians to have discussions with family members about fire safety, and to teach prevention measures at work and at home."

"We can also take this opportunity to express our gratitude and profound respect for our firefighters who, without hesitation, put their lives on the line to protect ours," added Minister Raitt. "This courage and professionalism demonstrates the very best of human character—and we recognize their role in keeping all of us safe."

This year, Fire Prevention Week is being held from October 3 to 9, and the theme is "Smoke Alarms: A sound you can live with!". As part of the launch, children's entertainer Ms. Mary Lambert presented her award-winning show entitled "Sing Out Fire Safety" to a number of local Ottawa school children. 

"Fire Prevention Week is the one week of the year when we highlight activities that focus on eliminating preventable and senseless fire losses throughout the year," said Mr. Rick McCullough, President of Fire Prevention Canada. "We know our success depends on the cooperation and collaboration of all fire departments, government departments and, especially, each and every citizen."

In Canada, the Governor General proclaimed the first national Fire Prevention Day in 1919, and the first Fire Prevention Week in 1923. During Fire Prevention Week, the Government of Canada promotes fire prevention in federal government properties and workplaces and works closely with other organizations such as Fire Prevention Canada.

The Labour Program is responsible for the administration of both the Canada Labour Code and the Treasury Board Policy on Fire Protection. Through the Fire Protection Services program, the Labour Program ensures that federal properties and their occupants are protected from fire hazards.

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Fire Prevention Week 2010

The Government of Canada supports Fire Prevention Week, which is the annual focal point for fire prevention activities sponsored by Fire Prevention Canada and federal, provincial and municipal fire services. Fire Prevention Week 2010 is being observed from October 3 to 9. The theme for this year is "Smoke Alarms: A sound you can live with!".

Fire Prevention Week was first observed in Canada in 1919. This week is observed across North America and commemorates the Great Fire of Chicago, which killed 300 people and destroyed 17 430 buildings on October 9, 1871. This tragedy, together with the blaze on Parliament Hill in February 1916, helped to increase awareness of fire prevention in Canada.

Each year, the Governor General of Canada signs the Fire Prevention Week Proclamation, reminding Canadians to remain vigilant and responsive to the dangers of fire.

The Governor General is the Honorary Patron of Fire Prevention Canada, a non-profit organization founded in 1976. Fire Prevention Canada works with the public and private sectors to achieve fire safety through education. It develops educational and promotional materials for use by Canadian fire services and the public throughout the year and during Fire Prevention Week.

The Labour Program is responsible for administering and promoting the Treasury Board policy and standards on fire risk management, as well as codes and regulations dealing with fire safety under the Canada Labour Code. The Labour Program works mainly to protect buildings under federal jurisdiction, public service employees and First Nations communities.

Canada has 15 federal, provincial and territorial jurisdictions responsible for fire safety legislation. In addition, municipalities have fire safety by-laws. The details of fire safety legislation may vary from one jurisdiction to another, but the aim remains the same: to protect the lives and property of Canadians.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Raitt
    Jocelyne Turner
    Press Secretary
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office