Terms Of Reference Announced For CFA Inquiry

Terms Of Reference Announced For CFA Inquiry

Victoria Deputy Premier Peter Ryan

Victoria Minister for Emergency Services Peter Ryan

Former Judge To Lead Independent CFA Inquiry

Victor P Taffa

Retired County Court Judge, the Honourable David Jones, will lead an independent inquiry into arrangements made by the Country Fire Authority (CFA) for CFA volunteers, Deputy Premier and Minister for Emergency Services Peter Ryan announced today.

“Mr. Jones has an exemplary career that includes 25 years as Judge of the Victorian County Court. He is currently Chairman of the AFL Tribunal and has been a member of the Adult Parole Board since 2002.” Mr. Ryan said.

“With considerable experience in the public and private sector, Mr. Jones is very well suited to conduct the CFA inquiry.”

 

Mr. Ryan said the inquiry would examine the effect of arrangements made by the CFA on issues pertinent to volunteers, including recruitment, training, deployment, utilisation and support of CFA volunteers.

“Among the terms of reference is scope for Mr Jones to look at mechanisms to enable and ensure that the voices of CFA volunteers are heard in accordance with CFA’s commitment under the Volunteer Charter.” Mr. Ryan said.

“The charter has been signed by the Government and was last week introduced to Parliament to be enshrined in legislation.”

Mr. Ryan said the CFA Volunteer Charter was a commitment by the Coalition Government, the CFA and its volunteers to recognise the needs of volunteers and consult with them on matters that affected them.

“The Coalition is grateful of the huge contribution made to the community by Victoria’s 58,000 CFA volunteers, who selflessly give their time looking out for the well-being and safety of others.” Mr. Ryan said.

“The Coalition believes an inquiry into the arrangements made by the CFA for volunteers will help achieve the charter’s intention to strengthen and facilitate the Governments and CFA’s contribution to volunteers.”

The Honourable David Jones has been Chairman of the AFL Tribunal since 2005 and a member of the Adult Parole Board since 2002. He served for 25 years as a Judge of the County Court of Victoria, from 1986 to 2002 and was Special Investigations Monitor from 2004 to 2009.

Mr. Jones is the former Chair of the Legal Aid Commission, former Chair of the Australian Broadcasting Tribunal, former President of the Accident Compensation Tribunal, former President of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal and former Deputy Chair of the Legal Profession Tribunal.

CFA Inquiry – Terms of Reference

1. To examine the effect of arrangements made by the CFA on the recruitment, training, deployment, utilisation and support of CFA volunteers, including:

1.1 The availability and accessibility of general or specialist training to volunteers so that CFA can both maximise the utilisation of volunteers and realise volunteer potential (for example, through training for senior incident management roles);

1.2 Impediments to the ability for CFA Volunteers to undertake any role within the CFA;

1.3 Matters pertaining to the capacity for CFA volunteers to be appointed as employees of CFA, including:

(a) Any impediments to such appointments resulting from qualification or eligibility requirements; and

(b) The availability and accessibility of training to volunteers which may make them eligible for appointment to any role;

1.4 Mechanisms to enable and ensure that volunteer voices are heard and their experience utilised in accordance with CFA’s commitment under the Volunteer Charter, including on matters relating to:

(a) The choice of, and use of, equipment;

(b) The provision of support to brigades.

1.5 The availability and utilisation of mechanisms, procedures or processes to resolve disputes which might reasonably be expected to affect the interests of CFA volunteers, in an expeditious manner.

2. To make recommendations to address any shortcomings or difficulties identified as a result of the examination of the subject matter contained in term of reference 1.