Parliamentary Inquiry into the Fire Services Reform

16 August

The recent Parliamentary Inquiry into the Fire Services Reform Bill was presented with overwhelming evidence that the need for reform is critical.

So what did we learn? That there’s overwhelming support for fire services reform in Victoria - here’s a breakdown:

  • Over 1800 submissions.
  • Near 1400 submissions supported the proposed reform.
  • More than 1000 examples of serious safety issues and incidents where firefighters and community members were at risk, which will be addressed through the reform.
  • Support for reform from two of Victoria’s most senior fire services leaders: Victoria’s Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley and CFA Chief Officer Steve Warrington.
  • Support for reform from expert fire services advisor and former NSW Fire Rescue Commissioner Greg Mullins.
  • Only 37 CFA brigade submissions against reform - this is 0.3% of the 1200 CFA brigades that exist.

CFA Chief Officer Warrington, a strong advocate for reform, told the Inquiry: “Let me be really clear, this sector, including CFA, needs reform.”

Commissioner Lapsley also called for reform, telling the Inquiry: “To do nothing is a very dangerous, extremely dangerous position.”

We can’t risk waiting any longer. Victoria’s fire services system has not significantly changed in 60 years, whereas the population has boomed. Farmland has turned into busy residential suburbs as Melbourne keeps sprawling outwards. The people of Victoria need a modern fire services system that ensures the safety of people and property in a growing state.

The select committee is expected to table its report in August, after which the Bill will be voted on. 

We need your help to show our politicians that they need to support reform. The safety of our communities and the firefighters who protect them depend on it.

Please send an automated email to your MLC at https://firedoesntwait.com.au/email-mp, asking for them to vote yes for reform, and a modern, safe system.