On Labor Day weekend, members of the Loudoun County Combined Fire and Rescue System and the Loudoun Career Fire Fighters Association Local 3756 will hit the streets for the first time in years to “fill the boot” for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
The fundraiser, which sees firefighters collecting donations streetside, was shut down in Loudoun in 2013 when county supervisors banned all solicitation from occupants of motor vehicles over safety concerns. In July, the current county board voted to create an enforcement holiday on that ordinance for Labor Day weekend, authorizing panhandling for fundraising purposes, although not without some concerns raised about safety and constitutionality.
But with that vote done and the prohibition lifted for the weekend, drivers may once again be asked to toss their donation into a firefighter’s boot while sitting at an intersection. Firefighters will be on the streets Sept. 3-5.
“Our fire and rescue family remains wholly committed to this great cause and we appreciate the generosity of Loudoun County citizens and visitors that will undoubtedly make this campaign a success,” said System Chief Keith H. Johnson.
For more than 60 years, the International Association of Fire Fighters has pledged to help the Muscular Dystrophy Association until a cure was found for the debilitating condition. All funds raised by Loudoun County firefighters assist local families affected by one of the forty-three neuromuscular diseases.
Those donations provide families with a network of specialized clinics, financial aid for assistive equipment, support groups, informative publications, and accessible summer camps for kids.