Wednesday 29 May 2019
The Andrews Labor Government has confirmed the fears of local volunteers by today reintroducing to Parliament its divisive and flawed legislation to smash up the CFA.
Member for Murray Plains Peter Walsh condemned the move and said Daniel Andrews had clearly been waiting to get the Federal Election out of the way before he brought back his Bill to tear apart the CFA.
“This is a terribly sad day for CFA volunteers who have committed years to an organisation in service to the community ” Mr Walsh said.
“Daniel Andrews is hell-bent on tearing the CFA apart to give the United Firefighters Union control of the organisation.
“Labor has again introduced a Bill that hands the UFU veto power over the CFA and is tied to presumptive rights legislation meaning CFA volunteers who get cancer won’t receive compensation unless the UFU also gains control of firefighting operations.”
The Bill seeks to create Fire Rescue Victoria staffed only by career firefighters meaning Victoria’s 35 integrated fire stations including at Bendigo and Shepparton will be carved out of the CFA.
Under the changes the CFA will become a volunteer-only body. Paid staff with FRV will be contracted back to the CFA.
“The Bill Labor’s brought back has no practical change to Daniel Andrews’ first destructive plan to merge the CFA and the MFB because the union will still have the power to dictate to volunteers by setting the conditions contracted CFA staff work under ” Mr Walsh said.
“In major bushfires our brigades rely on help from volunteers at those integrated stations to provide extra support.
“Daniel Andrews’ four-year war against the CFA has seen 3534 operational volunteers leave the organisation.
“Daniel Andrews did not have the courage to bring this to Parliament before the federal election – because he knows the Fire Rescue Victoria legislation is wrong.
“I won’t stop fighting for our CFA volunteers. They don’t deserve to be treated in this way.”