Our plan to rebuild the CFA: community consultation begins

In July this year, the Victorian Liberal Nationals announced their plan to rebuild the Country Fire Authority (CFA) following the implementation of the Andrews Labor Government’s disastrous fire services reforms.

A key part of the Liberal Nationals’ plan is to engage directly with CFA volunteers and key stakeholders.

We firmly believe that hearing directly from CFA volunteers is the only way to rebuild the CFA as an independent, volunteer and equal fire service.

As part of this consultation phase, the Liberal Nationals will establish a CFA Advisory Committee. The Committee will comprise members with extensive experience in emergency services.

This Committee will be tasked with seeking and reviewing feedback from CFA volunteers and key stakeholders and will provide recommendations to the Liberal Nationals on the future redevelopment of the CFA.

This Committee will be chaired by Jack Rush QC. Mr Rush played a pivotal role as Counsel assisting in the Black Saturday Bushfire Royal Commission.

The Committee will also consist of:

  • Craig Lapsley PSM, former Victorian Emergency Management Commissioner
  • John Peberdy, former member and acting-chair of the CFA Board
  • Ev Duke, former member of the SES board
  • Adam Barnett, Chief Executive Officer of Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria (VFBV)

The committee will also consist of three CFA volunteers who will be nominatedby the VFBV.

Today’s announcement builds on the consultation that the Liberal Nationals have already commenced with CFA brigades and volunteers with the launch of the “Rebuild the CFA” website. Through this website all volunteers will have the opportunity to provide direct feedback on all aspects of CFA reform.

For too long the voices of volunteer brigades and firefighters have been ignored. The Liberal Nationals understand that volunteers are the heart and soul of the CFA and are essential to this state’s fire preparedness and response. 

Under a Liberal Nationals Government, CFA volunteers will receive the support and respect they rightly deserve.

Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Emergency Services, Nick Wakeling:

“Direct consultation with CFA volunteers is the central plank of the Victorian Liberal Nationals’ plan to rebuild the CFA.

“The Liberal Nationals understand that there is no CFA without CFA volunteers. The voices of CFA volunteers have been ignored for too long.

“The CFA Advisory Committee will comprise members with extensive experience in Victoria’s emergency services. The Committee will play a critical role in helping shape the CFA as a truly independent, volunteer-based organisation.

“Under a Liberal Nationals Government, CFA volunteers will always receive the support and respect they so much deserve.”

Comments attributable to Jack Rush QC, Chair of the CFA Advisory Committee:

“This process provides a critical opportunity to promote the interests of a most precious resource, volunteer firefighters and to ensure the future of the State’s largest fire agency – the CFA.”

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