ACT Government reaffirms commitment with ESA volunteers

Released 20/11/2013

Chief Minister, Katy Gallagher and Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Simon Corbell have today signed an updated Volunteer Charter for those who perform important volunteer roles with the ACT Emergency Service Agency (ESA).

"Volunteers with the ACT ESA are fundamental to emergency management in the ACT and it is vital that their value and importance is recognised," Mr Corbell said.

"The signing of the updated ESA Volunteer Charter ensures that the ACT Government and the ESA will continue to commit to consultation with over 1,900 volunteers about matters that could affect volunteers," he said.

"Having all parties commit to meaningful consultation in relation to any matters likely to affect volunteers is essential.

The initial ESA Volunteer Charter was signed in September 2008. Volunteers with the ACT Rural Fire Service (ACTRFS), ACT State Emergency Service (ACTSES) and ACT Fire & Rescue Community Fire Unit Volunteers were all included in the charter. During recent meetings with the Minister and ESA volunteers, it was decided that an updated version be agreed upon to also include the ESA Mapping and Planning Support (MAPS) Volunteers.

The Chief Minister said that volunteers play a crucial role right across our Emergency Services Agency.

"Volunteers have played a key role in many recent operations across Australia, ESA MAPS volunteers are specialists in their field undertaking crucial mapping and Geographical Information System (GIS) tasks," the Chief Minister said.

"Fast developing a name for themselves, the unique work that the ESA MAPS volunteers do have seen them deployed to disaster zones across Australia and more recently, joined the ACTRFS and the ACTSES in October and November's bushfire activity in NSW.

"Today's signing of the ESA Volunteer Charter further strengthens the relationship between the ACT Government, the ESA and its valued volunteers.

"On behalf of the ACT community, I would like to thank all ESA volunteers who continue to willingly give their time, joining all ESA personnel, in protecting the ACT and interstate communities in times of need," the Chief Minister concluded.

- Statement ends -

Section: Simon Corbell, MLA | Media Releases

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