Volunteer firefighters have been let down again by the State Government after it yesterday voted against a bill put forward by the Liberal-Nationals Coalition.
Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, said the Coalition’s Country Fire Authority Amendment (Protecting CFA Volunteers) Bill sought to enshrine the rights of Victorian firefighters’ in legislation, following the ongoing EBA dispute.
“This Bill would have ensured that the CFA didn’t enter into any agreement that could have an adverse effect on the interests of volunteer firefighters under the Volunteer Charter,” Mr Bull said.
“It is therefore disappointing that the people who are elected to run our State vote against such a decision and back their union mates as pay back for helping them get elected in marginal seats at the 2014 election.”
Mr Bull said the United Firefighters Union had tried to bully the CFA into signing a common law deed that would force through key clauses in the proposed enterprise bargaining agreement.
Despite questioning from the Coalition in Parliament yesterday, Premier Daniel Andrews would not rule out doing a side deal with the United Firefighters Union, which could give it veto powers over CFA management decisions.
Mr Bull said the Government’s attack on volunteers had left the CFA heading into a dangerous summer fire season with the dispute still unresolved.
“When this government sacked the board 176 days ago, it said the dispute had ended. This is definitely not the case,” Mr Bull said.
Caption: Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, is concerned for CFA volunteers like those at Valencia Creek Fire Brigade, after the State Government’s decision not to support the Country Fire Authority Amendment (Protecting CFA Volunteers) Bill.
Thursday, December 8, 2016