Statement by the minister in Parliament 7 May 2015
Minister, Jo Ann Miller, gave a ministerial statement in state parliament, on 7 May 2015. The Minister confirmed that the new government will legislate for presumptive legislation and thanked firefighters and other emergency services workers for their hard work, dedication and commitment.
The ALP in opposition committed to your union in December 2013, that if they were returned to government, they would introduce presumptive legislation to protect firefighters.
You can read what our Minister said below:
Hon. JR MILLER (Bundamba—ALP) (Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services and Minister for Corrective Services) (10.02 am): “There is something very special about our firefighters. That is why it is our duty as a government to do all we can to look after their wellbeing because, after all, they do all they can to look after ours. That is why I am so proud to stand here today to say to our firefighters that we will take action to protect you. Our sick firefighters should not have to battle with bureaucracy.
The Palaszczuk Labor government will move quickly to provide protection for our hardworking and dedicated firefighters both full-time and auxiliary and also to some members of the rural fire brigades. We will remove the burden on firefighters who develop any one of 12 cancer related diseases to prove it is work related. This will make it easier for them to access financial assistance. This is something that firefighters have been raising with governments for many years, but it is this Labor government, the Palaszczuk Labor government, that will get it done.
I want to thank the Treasurer for moving fast and giving the direction to his department to draft the appropriate legislation. It is very important that firefighters know that their service is valued by this government. These men and women are the bravest in our community. They do an outstanding job saving the lives and the property of Queenslanders every day.
Last weekend we saw them in action—not necessarily responding to fires but to storms, as they rescued people in swift water rescue incidents.
In opposition, we gave our commitment to the United Firefighters Union of Queensland that a Labor government will move to protect our firefighters, and today I honour that commitment. I want to thank the Secretary of the UFU, John Oliver, for his strong representation on behalf of his members during our consultations. Unlike the LNP, we will always consult and we will always listen.
Our firefighters put in an incredible effort to keep Queenslanders safe. They deserve to be supported. The hard work and dedication of each and every one of our police, emergency services personnel and our civilian support staff leave me in awe every day. The emergency services personnel and volunteers are very special and they are very highly regarded right across Queensland.
Knowing that our state is in such safe hands is extremely reassuring. Our Palaszczuk government is grateful for the commitment of these decent people. I want to remind them all that their work does not go unnoticed and I also want to thank them for their work from the bottom of my heart.”
The former LNP government also committed to your union that they would introduce presumptive legislation if they were re-elected. We anticipate bi-partisan support for this important legislation.
John Oliver – State Secretary