2018 State Emergency Service Forum
The Minister advised the SES Volunteers Association that a forum of the SES would be conducted in December to address the SES issues Consequently, DFES invited all SES Local Managers and one of their leadership team, the SES Volunteers Association committee members and the SES Volunteer Advisory Committee members to a weekend forum to be held at the Duxton Hotel in Perth on 1 and 2 December.
One hundred and twenty SES Volunteers and DFES staff attended the forum. The Minister stated in his opening address that their will not be a Chief Officer of the SES. The Commissioner mentioned in his opening speech that many good things have been done by DFES to assist the SES Volunteers including the AEDs (donated by the RAC), the Operational Efficiency Payments and the Scout Badge. The Commissioner stated that “A line has been drawn in the sand” and we can look forward to a new future with “balanced cultures” under his leadership.
The consultant used a survey to produce five themes. These themes were discussed around the tables and many issues that are affecting the SES Volunteers and their units were tabled.
On the Sunday Chief Superintendent Craig Waters presented recent changes and planned fixes to SES training issues arising from the past five years. Following this training was discussed and a question and answer session were conducted.
As there was insufficient time on both days for many of the questions from SES Volunteers to be tabled, it was agreed on the last day, that a parking lot for questions would be established at the rear of the room for DFES to follow up.
The forum was an ideal opportunity for the senior staff to listen to the SES Volunteers about some of their concerns and the issues facing them in their roles of preparation and response in their communities.
It was acknowledged by DFES that there are training and other procedural issues.
The Commissioner made a commitment that the report will be delivered to him by the end of January 2019 and that there will be timely feedback to the SES Volunteers about the future direction of the SES.
The SES Volunteers Association will be meeting with the Commissioner to discuss some of the feedback and how we can best assist the SES Volunteers on their issues.
The SES Volunteers Association expect to be working with DFES on this report and its recommendations when delivered.
Printable copy of this update should you wish to place a copy on your Unit notice board. -