Inquiry into the Country Fire Service now accepting submissions

The Liberal Opposition welcomes news that the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Occupational Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation has opened submissions for its inquiry into volunteer management and support within the Country Fire Service (CFS).

The Committee will specifically include:

  • Assessing support mechanisms available to volunteer firefighters;
  • Examining the processes, procedures, criteria and timeliness of investigations into volunteer conduct;
  • Evaluating the communication channels and procedures within the CFS, especially concerning volunteers’ ability to voice their concerns and the organisations’ responsiveness
  • Any other relevant matters related to the functioning, governance, and support structures of the CFS (including suitability of facilities and equipment)

Shadow Minister for Emergency Services, Adrian Pederick, said he has been contacted by numerous people involved with the CFS who say they will provide submissions and are glad they now have the chance to do so without reprimand.

“This is a great opportunity for past and current volunteers and staff to voice their experiences with the CFS in the spirit of improving the organisation,” Mr Pederick said.

“I have already heard from a number of volunteers about their experiences, and I hope to hear from many more through the Committee.

“Those making a submission can ask the Committee that it be kept confidential. A request to make a submission in person can also be made”

Shadow Assistant Minister for Regional South Australia, Ben Hood, said he was pleased that there had been some movement with the crucial inquiry, given it was referred to the Committee almost four months ago. 

“The Liberal Opposition has worked hard to ensure this inquiry would go ahead and I urge anyone interested in the support mechanisms and processes for volunteers within the CFS to consider making a submission,” Mr Hood said.

“I look forward to working with my Committee colleagues on this inquiry as we hear directly from the CFS command and, importantly, the volunteers themselves.

“We want feedback on the current structures for volunteer support and the opportunities that may exist to strengthen that support for our brave CFS volunteers around the state.”

To provide a submission, you can email the Secretary of the Parliamentary Committee on Occupation Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Committee, Shane Hilton, at: [email protected] or write to GPO Box 572, Adelaide SA 5001. 

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  • Adrian Pederick