"Fire chiefs will have to put at least one woman on each fire engine to meet diversity guidelines.
New targets say that at least 15 per cent of those in operational roles should be female.
That means they will fill one of the five or six places for crew on each engine.
Officials at the Local Government Association, which is pressing the quotas on fire authorities, said that an increased number of women firemen is necessary 'to meet the needs of local people'.
At present fewer than one in ten firemen are women even in the brigades with the highest proportion of females in operational jobs. Those with the least women employ proportions of around 3 per cent.
In an attempt to address this, local councillors who are appointed to serve on the fire authorities will be asked to sign up to the 'diversity charter'.
One of the pledges they are expected to make is to 'work to achieve recruitment targets of at least 15 per cent for women in operational roles'.
They are also asked to work towards minority ethnic representation at the same level as that in the working age population of the area.
At present just over 3 per cent of firemen are from ethnic minority groups.
Anthony Duggan, head of fire services at the Local Government Association, said: 'The fire service needs to be representative of the area it serves. It is important that the fire service attracts more women and ethnic minorities so that it can work more effectively in partnership with local authorities and other organisations to meet the needs of local people.'
Mr Duggan called for a 'culture change' and said that asking authority members to sign the diversity charter 'will show that those who are making the strategic decisions are serious about getting a greater mix of people working in the service'."
I am sure that Mrs NotaSheep, who is both a woman and a member of an ethnic minority, if our house was on fire would want to be rescued quickly and efficiently and the blaze put out rapidly.
Mr Duggan says:
"It is important that the fire service attracts more women and ethnic minorities so that it can work more effectively in partnership with local authorities and other organisations to meet the needs of local people.'"I am sorry but I don't understand how women's needs if their house is on fire differs from men's needs. I also don't understand how a Muslim's needs, a Hindu's needs, a Jew's needs, a Catholic's needs and so on and so on differ from a Anglican's needs. This is the sort of PC multi-cultural crap that has destroyed this country over the past few decades and it has to stop. It is pernicious, it is dangerous, it is divisive and it might be actually evil.