Ontario is combining Emergency Management Ontario and the Office of the Fire Marshal into one organization called the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management, which will be dedicated to promoting safer communities.
This new, integrated organization will strengthen the co-ordination and delivery of community safety programs, without impacting front-line services. The new office will:
Work with municipal partners to deliver fire safety and emergency management programs and services;
Share expert advice with local decision-makers;
Support municipal response efforts when called upon in an emergency.
The office will be located in the new state-of-the-art Forensic Services and Coroner's Complex in Toronto, which is opening in fall 2013.
Enhancing the way community safety programs and services are delivered is part of the Ontario government's plan to create safe communities and a fair society.
The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management will be led by Ted Wieclawek, who was appointed Fire Marshal of Ontario in 2011 following a national search.
Last year, Emergency Management Ontario responded to 24 declared emergencies and supported communities in a number of other incidents that did not result in emergency declarations.
The Office of the Fire Marshal (OFM) performs approximately 600 on-scene investigations a year and consults with local fire services on an additional 550 investigations. The OFM also provides initial and ongoing training to approximately 5,000 students at the Ontario Fire College and to additional 6,700 at off-campus locations.
Approximately 250 staff work at Emergency Management Ontario and the Office of the Fire Marshal.
"The integration of emergency management and fire prevention, protection and investigation will modernize the way we deliver community safety programs and services. It will support public safety and provide a coordinated level of service to Ontarians and communities facing emergencies." — Madeleine Meilleur, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services
"I am very pleased to be given this opportunity to lead emergency management and fire safety services, which are so vital to fostering and maintaining public safety in Ontario. I look forward to consulting with staff and our many partners to ensure a smooth and successful implementation, one that preserves the current level of service and delivers it more efficiently." — Tadeusz (Ted) Wieclawek, Fire Marshal and Chief of Emergency Management Ontario