Emergency Services | November 12, 2015

Kealy – CFA volunteers must be offered protection

Nationals Member for Lowan Emma Kealy is circulating a petition calling on the Andrews Labor Government to make cancer compensation accessible to both career and volunteer firefighters.

Emma Kealy MP has also recently signed a pledge to support legislation that will give all firefighters non-discriminatory access to compensation for cancers contracted as a result of their work.

Ms Kealy said the introduction of presumptive legislation would provide a greater level of protection for almost 60,000 CFA volunteers across the State who provide a critical role in Victoria’s emergency response.

“The legislation will mean firefighters diagnosed with particular types of cancers are presumed for compensation purposes to have contracted the illness as a result of their employment as a firefighter, thereby reversing the onus of proof,” Ms Kealy said.

“I am proud to circulate this petition and to have signed this pledge to show my support to all our volunteers and ensure they are offered equal protection to their professional counterparts.

“I will not support Labor introducing an unfair system that favours some firefighters over others,” she said

Ms Kealy said The Nationals, in Government, were strong supporters of Victoria’s CFA volunteers.

“Last year in Government we announced we would introduce this presumptive legislation.  We also provided the CFA with more than $2.29 billion, which enabled stations across the State to be replaced or upgraded.

“These upgrades ensure that the communities these brigades cover are better protected from the threat of fire and in addition, our dedicated volunteers have facilities that are safe, fit-for-purpose and meet their needs. 

“Firefighters protect all Victorians every day. They all deserve the right to equal protection.

“I urge members of the community to sign the petition by downloading a copy from my website www.emmakealy.com or please phone my office on either 5382 0097 or 5571 9800 and a copy can be posted out.

“It is essential that signed petitions are returned to the Lowan electorate office no later than Monday, 1 February so that I can table it in Parliament during the first sitting week of 2016.”

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