Emergency Services Parliament Gippsland South The Nationals Fire CFA Communities

Dan’s dodgy deal has CFA volunteers reeling

The Nationals Member for Gippsland South Danny O’Brien has called on the Melbourne Labor Government to rule out a deal that would give the United Firefighters Union unprecedented control of the CFA.

Mr O’Brien and Member for Gippsland East Tim Bull today met with CFA volunteers who are angry at the prospect of UFU influence and said Melbourne Labor needs to stand up to the militant UFU and show it values the outstanding contribution that volunteer firefighters make to keep our communities safe.

“This dodgy deal that Premier Dan Andrews is apparently close to accepting will permit the UFU to veto CFA management decisions, a move strongly opposed by the CFA’s management, board and volunteers,” Mr O’Brien said.

Other items mooted for agreement include a requirement that seven paid firefighters attend every fireground before a response can begin and enormous increases to salaries and conditions.

“This is a real kick in the pants for our hardworking CFA volunteers who risk their lives to protect us during times of emergency. It’s no wonder they’re taking to the streets to protest the Premier’s actions.”

Mr O’Brien said it was worrying that Daniel Andrews and his Melbourne mates wanted to hand a city-based union the power to override CFA management decisions.

“The CFA is best equipped to make decisions when it comes to fighting fires in regional areas. This dubious deal is an insult to CFA volunteers and staff and the Premier should be aware he will suffer a significant backlash if he proceeds,” Mr O’Brien said.

“It’s well-known that the UFU has a disdain for CFA volunteers, yet it is those volunteers that are putting their lives on the line to protect regional communities.

“Daniel Andrews and his Labor Ministers must stand up to this militant union and ensure the important work of the CFA and its thousands of volunteers is not compromised.”

Mr O’Brien said CFA volunteers who were unhappy about the deal should send him an email outlining their concerns, at: danny.obrien@parliament.vic.gov.au.

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