'Taking the Heat': Fighting to Join the NYFD

The current cadre of female New York City firefighters represent a decades-long struggle of some pioneering women to earn the right to save lives alongside their male comrades.

Capt. Brenda Berkman has served the NYFD for more than 23 years.

Capt. Brenda Berkman has served the NYFD for more than 23 years. PBS hide caption

itoggle caption PBS

Leading that fight was Brenda Berkman, now a captain for the NYFD. She started her career in the formerly all-male fire service in 1982, after winning a federal sex discrimination lawsuit.

That lawsuit and the personal stories of the other female firefighters who have followed Berkman into service is the subject of a new PBS documentary, Taking the Heat.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.