March 01, 2023
Public safety - It plays a critical part in ensuring residents of any community have the opportunity to live well and reach their personal full potential. Public safety is about protecting the general public and prioritizing an individual's physical safety. First Responders - including firefighters, police officers and paramedics - are most often providing the hands-on support that makes any community physically safe.
The individuals who protect and serve their communities are professionals dedicated to being their best with each situation they face. In honour of International Women's Day and together with the Ontario Provincial Police, York Regional Police, Central York Fire Services, and York Region Paramedic Services, we are excited to once again present four female emergency first responders who represent their professions with honour and distinction. We invite you to read each of their stories and learn more about how their aspirations, motivations, celebrations and strong ethic of caring for themselves and others have shaped their respective careers.
More Her First Responder Stories:
INSPIRE - Introducing CYFS Firefighter Catherine Bourrie - Celebrating International Women's Day 2023
INSPIRE - Meet YRP Constable Dezy Jones - Celebrating International Women's Day 2023
INSPIRE - Meet YRPS Paramedic Andrea ZaniniHooey - Celebrating International Women's Day 2023
Q: How long have you been a first responder?
A: I have been a first responder for three years.
Q: Did you grow up wanting to be a first responder?
A: Initially I did not. However my mother and my husband were first responders back home and watching them dedicate their lives daily and working tirelessly to help people inspired me to be a police constable. Now that I am a police constable, I wouldn’t think of anything else I would rather be doing. It's an honour to know that I am helping to make a difference and aid in making this province a better place for every resident.
Q: Where did you go to school to learn to be a first responder?
A: Initially I attended the Northern Caribbean University where I obtained a Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management. I then attended Centennial College where I completed a post graduate diploma in Project Management. From there, I attended the Ontario Police College where I studied to become a police officer.
Q: What has been the highlight of your career?
A: I am currently working out of the Aurora Detachment as a Road Officer in the Highway Safety Unit. I have had a very good journey thus far and I can't think of anything else I would rather be doing. I am also a Recruitment Ambassador where I get the opportunity to work with the Recruitment Officers to help prospective candidates come closer to achieving their goals to becoming a police officer. In addition to my roles as a constable and a Recruitment Ambassador, I am also in charge of the Prisoner Monitoring and Recording for the Aurora Detachment (PMR).
Q: What do you do to keep physically fit and take care of your mental wellbeing?
A: To keep physically fit, I work out at least 3 days per week in the gym at work and/or at home. I also try to go running at least once per week when the weather permits. Personally, I don't like using a treadmill but, if the weather isn't being very cooperative, I sometimes have no option but to use it. I do also make time to speak with a Psychologist at least once a month just to check in on my own mental well-being. I'm grateful to have a very supportive husband who actively supports me by helping me talk through things when I find I’m bothered by something and want to be able to deal with it accordingly.
Q: What’s your favourite thing to do outside of being a first responder?
A: I love to cook and I will do it any chance I get. I also love to travel and visit different parts of the world. I love to go out into my community and interact with people just to have conversations about anything and to check in on people to see how they are doing. I also love to plan and coordinate events whether big or small - it doesn’t matter. Finally I host a fitness and nutrition class on Saturdays to help people who want to have a healthier lifestyle and also persons interested in becoming a first responder. This helps people to just get stronger and be more healthier overall.
Enjoy more first responder stories: York Region Community Open House - Celebrating First Responders and IWD 2022
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Blog and Photos by Caroline Wiley. Caroline bridged her 20+ years of professional experience in the sport and recreation industry together with her passions for photography and supporting women in sport to create SeeWhatSheCanDo. Her vision is to create a welcoming space where active women find a sense of belonging within their own local community, see themselves in authentic and awe-inspiring ways and find resources to help them be their best active selves.
On behalf of the Ontario Provincial Police, York Regional Police, Central York Fire Services, and York Region Paramedic Services, SeeWhatSheCanDo would like to sincerely thank OPP Constable Jodi-Ann Morrison for sharing her first responder story as part of our collective IWD 2023 celebrations.
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