Friday, 1 June 2012
Fit for Duty – Submission of suitability for Volunteer Firefighters
The RFBAQ over the last 3 days has individually met with the United Firefighters Union Queensland (UFUQ), the Senior Officers Union (SOU) and the Queensland Auxiliary Firefighters Association (QAFA) to organise for the four representative bodies to meet and work towards a joint submission on the provisions of Fit for Duty that will be provided to the Hon. Jack Dempsey MP, Minister for Police and Community Safety and to QFRS Commissioner Lee Johnson AFSM.
Each of theses representative bodies are very keen to see Fit for Duty modified into a workable document that will allow the QFRS to be able to protect all communities across Queensland through Rural Fire Brigades, Urban / Auxiliary stations and senior officers.
The current constraints of Fit for Duty will not only strip community fire brigades of active rural firefighters in what is shaping up to be a monstrous bushfire season, but will also impact heavily on all forms of fire and rescue in Queensland, and this will leave all communities exposed at the time where cohesion, direction and support are needed most.
On the 27th April, the RFBAQ published a website story, excerpt below –
Fit for Duty - The Minister has noted your request for an immediate freeze on the provisions of QFRS “Fit for Duty” provisions and the adverse impact they would have on the Rural Fire Brigade membership structure. Consequently, the Minister has formally asked the QFRS, through the Director-General of the Department of Community Safety, to reassess the suitability of the provisions as they apply to Queensland’s Rural Fire Brigade volunteers.
The RFBAQ believes that the elected representative bodies are the natural conduit for the generation of a workable Fit for Duty framework, and then that this submission should be delivered to the QFRS.