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State election 2010 posted : 23 February 2010

2010 State Election

The 2010 State election is upon us and UFUTAS has invited the major parties to tell us what they see for the future of the Tasmania Fire Service. 

Fire and rescue are not usually big ticket items in a Tasmanian election.  The Myer fire Coronial Inquest and the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission will hopefully change that.

UFUTAS has sent the following covering letter to the Labor Premier, the Leader of the Tasmanian Liberals and the Leader of the Tasmanian Greens.

 "19 February 2010

 

Hon Nick McKim

Leader of the Tasmanian Greens

Level 1

162 Macquarie Street

HOBART  TAS  7000

 

Dear Nick

 

I write to invite you to conference of the United Firefighters Union of Australia on the morning of 11 March 2010 in Hobart and to seek your responses to the attached survey regarding Tasmania Fire Service issues.

 

You will be aware that the United Firefighters Union has previously joined with the Police Association of Tasmania and the Health and Community Services Union to seek your responses to matters that are of common interest to Tasmanian police officers, ambulance officers and firefighters.

 

The attached survey is different to the one referred to above in one particular aspect.  This survey is not about improving the wages and employment conditions of firefighters.  Rather, it is about giving firefighters the tools and government support they need to do their job properly and thus provide a better service to the Tasmanian community.

 

This survey is also about the safety of firefighters, particularly in Devonport and Burnie where there is an unsafe system of work because a lack of timely back up.

 

More broadly, I ask you to take into consideration that the Coronial Inquest into the Myer fire identified significant shortcomings in relation to the operational effectiveness of the Tasmania Fire Service.

 

Even more importantly, I ask you to note that Tasmania shares with the rest of South Eastern Australia the dubious honour of being the most dangerous vegetation fire environment on earth.

 

These are matters of real significance and the view of the UFU is that a great deal of responsibility will rest on the next Tasmanian Government insofar as addressing the need for improved public safety for all Tasmanians.

 

To assist you with the task of completing the survey I have provided a commentary for each question and attachments where appropriate.  I have also included an electronic version of the survey which might also be of assistance.  In addition, I have taken the opportunity to raise the profile of these issues by forwarding a copy of this survey to all candidates standing for each of the three parties represented in the House of Assembly.

 

The members of the UFU look forward to your responses.

 

To ensure that your responses can be properly communicated to UFU members in a timely manner, I respectfully request that your advice be provided by 9 March 2010.

 

Yours faithfully

 

Richard Warwick

Secretary"

 

A full copy of the survey can be downloaded HERE

 

The responses of the three political parties will be posted on this web site when they have been received.