The Legislative Council, Portfolio Committee No. 4 – Legal Affairs will inquire into and report on emergency services agencies, and in particular:
a) The prevalence of bullying, harassment and discrimination, as well as the effectiveness of the protocols and procedures in place to manage and resolve such complaints within emergency services agencies, including: New South Wales Rural Fire Service, Fire and Rescue New South Wales, New South Wales Police Force, Ambulance Service of New South Wales, and New South Wales State Emergency Service.
b) The support structures in place to assist victims of workplace bullying, harassment and/ or discrimination within emergency services agencies.
c) The support services available to emergency services workers and volunteers to assist with mental health issues resulting from workplace trauma and the effectiveness of those programs.
d) The appropriateness of uniforms provided to personnel in emergency services agencies.
e) The relocation of the New South Wales Rural Fire Services Headquarters to Orange, Dubbo or Parkes.
Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party Member for Orange Philip Donato has declared that the prospect of relocating the NSW Rural Fire Service Headquarters to a rural community is back on the agenda.
He said that the message is loud and clear that the Central West wants to see the Rural Fire Service based in a rural community such as Orange, Parkes or Dubbo.
His Upper House Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party colleague Robert Borsak launched an inquiry into emergency services agencies last week. Part of its focus will be on where the Rural Fire Service should be based.
A very big and sincere well done to the NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Small Business, John Barilaro as he explains the “Easy to do business” program.
Mr Barilaro talks about streamlining business operations, boosting the NSW economy, making it easier and the removal of red tape.
He also suggests that much of the bureaucracy associated with the red tape is typical of government.
The VFFA fully supports this fantastic approach but are disappointed in the short sightedness of the NSW Nationals when it comes to the failure to see the vast benefits of relocating the NSW Rural Fire Service Head Office or larger parts thereof to a regional area.
Did you know that the bullying and harassment issue has been around for a long time in the NSW RFS and it is not limited to RFS Volunteers?
Where does this bullying and harassment come from and where will it end?
It looks very suspicious when we see the NSW State Government failing to respond to the views of regional and rural communities. One example is the decentralisation of the RFS Head Office.
Are they being influenced by the NSW RFS?
Are they being bullied in some way?
The St Ivan fire razed an estimated 55,000 hectares of farming-land east of Dunedoo, destroying vital agricultural infrastructure like sheds, machinery, homes, over 5,500 kilometres of fencing and more than 5,000 head of sheep and cattle.
A move to a regional or rural area has many benefits.
This post features a Radio 2GB podcast.
The podcast is very interesting and somewhat scary in terms of population growth in the big cities. Chris Smith (Radio 2GB) speaks with Foundation for Regional Development CEO, Peter Bailey, about decentralisation.
Barnaby Joyce is calling upon regional Australians to make it clear on why areas outside big cities deserve jobs.
The Nationals believe in decentralisation which is spreading job opportunities across Australia.
It is very disappointing that the government has not heeded the warnings made clear in the Orange By Election.
Orange and Dubbo (like many other regional areas) have a lot to offer, flying from Sydney to Orange or Dubbo would be comparable and a lot more enjoyable than dealing with city traffic. The Commissioner could even have the chopper standing by just outside his office.
It is a very short sighted decision and it may proof to become extremely costly in terms of voter confidence in the lead up to the next election.