Statement on CFA split

“The iconic CFA has been smashed up to appease the demands of the United Firefighters Union.”

“The Emergency Service Minister James Merlino says this split is necessary to address cultural issues within the organisations. But this will divide people based on their status and simply create an us versus them situation.”

“Minister Merlino keeps pointing to reviews of fire services, including the 2009 Bushfires Royal Commission, but not one of those has recommended this model and Minister Merlino cannot explain why the government is pushing forward with it.”

“He cannot answer questions about the cost of this split; it’s still unclear how much taxpayers will cough up so Daniel Andrews can keep the UFU happy – estimations range from $160 million to $1 Billion.”

“I have no doubt into the future we will see the UFU trying to extend its power even further and the role of CFA volunteers will be reduced.”

“I want a rock solid guarantee from the Premier and Minister that volunteers will not be forced out of stations – including those in Warrnambool and Portland.”

“This whole saga shows that Daniel Andrews is beholden to the unions and will do anything to keep his job.”

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