* UPDATE: Since this post was published, we’ve had great news confirming that Minister Logan will undertake significant public consultation process before introducing any proposed legislative changes to Parliament. Thank you for listening Minister.
Please find below a Question Without Notice asked by the Hon Colin de Grussa and answered today by the Hon Stephen Dawson MLC representing the Emergency Services Minister, Hon Fran Logan MLA.
Based on the answer provided to this question, the Association of Volunteer Bush Fire Brigades (AVBFB) will now write to Minister Logan and his Cabinet colleagues to urge the release of the discussion paper ASAP and in due course, a draft Bill along with an open and transparent consultation process.
We do not know what the impetus of Mr de Grussa’s question was, but assume, like this Association, none of the other volunteer peak bodies have been involved in developing proposed changes to emergency services legislation since the last government’s attempt in 2014 – which did not proceed.
If you are interested in what was proposed back then and how the AVBFB responded on behalf of our incredible Bush Fire Volunteer members, you can find more information here https://avbfb.org/dfes-concept-paper-2014/
We thank Colin de Grussa for his ongoing interest in emergency services volunteers.
FIRE AND EMERGENCY SERVICES ACT — REVIEW
Hon COLIN de GRUSSA to the minister representing the Minister for Emergency Services:
I refer to the Department of Fire and Emergency Services review of the Fire and Emergency Services Act.
(1) What is the status and expected time line of this review?
(2) As part of this review, does the minister anticipate any changes that will increase the administrative role of the Department of Fire and Emergency Services for the State Emergency Service or change or alter the Department of Fire and Emergency Services’ management role for the SES?
Hon STEPHEN DAWSON replied:
I thank the honourable member for some notice of the question
(1) The review is completed and drafting instructions have been finalised. The release of the resulting discussion paper will be considered by cabinet in due course. The Minister for Emergency Services expects to provide an update in the near future.
(2) The minister anticipates that the new emergency services legislation will improve and modernise the relationship between all volunteer groups, including the SES and relevant departments. Further consultation with volunteers and other key stakeholders will occur as part of this process.