Vancouver is hiring a bunch of new lifeguards and it pays "really well"

Apr 17 2023, 11:29 pm

Summer is fast approaching and with Metro Vancouver’s first outdoor pool opening just around the corner, local municipalities are gearing up for a busy swim season.

The City of Vancouver has announced that it is hiring certified lifeguards for a variety of indoor and outdoor facilities and that the job pays “really well.”

According to Steve Kellock, director of Recreation Services for the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, “Lifeguard and swim instructor recruitment is a top priority for the Park Board.”


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“The certification process not only teaches the skills needed to save a life and the leadership skills associated with teaching lessons but being a lifeguard is a valuable addition to any resume,” said Kellock in a release. “It can open doors to a multitude of career opportunities, including those in the emergency medical profession like paramedics and firefighting, or preparation for instructional careers like teaching.”

Some Vancouver outdoor pools and water sessions had to be reduced last summer due to the city having trouble hiring enough lifeguards. A limited supply of lifeguards meant that some pools also had to close for drop-in visits in 2022.

Daily Hive Vancouver

The City is hopeful that it can recruit new lifeguards by reminding potential applicants that “becoming a life-saving pillar of your community is not a massive time or financial commitment, despite common misconceptions.”

Lifeguards need to be 16 years old and have completed a series of five courses that take 135 hours to complete. Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation offers the courses all year-round with lifeguard certification also now part of Vancouver’s Leisure Access Program (LAP).

Vancouver’s indoor lifeguard positions pay between $25.21 to $29.63 per hour to start with an additional 12% in lieu of benefits. Those hired for outdoor lifeguard positions can expect to begin at $30.81 per hour with the 12% in lieu of benefits added as well.

Second Beach pool

Second Beach Pool in Vancouver (Marianne Catafesta/Shutterstock)

The City highlighted how its lifeguard pay rates are higher than the provincial minimum wage as well as a comparative Canadian city.

“By comparison, the City of Toronto recently raised their base lifeguarding wage from $19.43 to $21.19 per hour and the current minimum wage in British Columbia is $15.65 per hour,” outlined the City of Vancouver online.

Lifeguard applications are regularly reviewed and the next in-person screenings will be held on April 28, May 26, and June 9 for both indoor and outdoor roles. For more information on how to be certified or apply to be a lifeguard or swim instructor, visit the Vancouver Aquatics Academy online.

With files from Amir Ali and Nikitha Martins

Daniel ChaiDaniel Chai

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