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More support for Queensland's volunteer Rural Fire Brigades

Eligibility - Queensland residents

Principal Petitioner:

Stephen Andrew MP
PO Box 56

Total Signatures - 704

Sponsoring Member: Mr Steve Andrew MP

Posting Date: 3/12/2020

Closing Date: 3/06/2021

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TO: The Honourable the Speaker and Members of the Legislative Assembly of Queensland

Queensland residents draws to the attention of the House that with bushfire season approaching, Queensland will once again be relying heavily on the services of the Rural Fire Brigade of Queensland (RFBQ).

The RFBQ is responsible for protecting 17% of the State's population and 93% of its land area.

Every year, our Rural Fire Service's 33,000 dedicated volunteers, many of whom are retirees or small business owners, spend huge amounts of their own time in responding to fire incidents and in training and fundraising activities. 

During 2019-20's unprecedented bushfire season, many worked up to 18 hours-a-day fighting fires, often at great personal cost and hardship to themselves and their families. 

Your petitioners, therefore, request the House to recognise the countless acts of courage and sacrifice of volunteers and:

1. Acknowledge the significant contribution the Rural Fire Service makes to fire management, mitigation and emergency response in Qld;
2. Substantially increase the Rural Fire Service's current 6% share of the QFES Budget;
3. Increase the number of its paid support staff, particularly in rural and regional areas where the ratio is around 1 for every 533 volunteers;
4. Grant its volunteers, the same Blue Card Exemption given to Police and other emergency workers;
5. Restore local control to Rural Fire Brigades; and
6. Make substantial upgrades to RFBQ Equipment and Infrastructure a "Priority Investment" and ensure ALL brigades are properly resourced and equipped for the upcoming bushfire season.