Bulletin No: 146 | 28 August 2018
To: ALL UFU MEMBERS
DRAFT RESPONSE TEMPLATE FOR CFA CEO PAUL SMITH AND CFA CHAIR GREG SMITH
Their silence is deafening …
- CFA CEO Paul Smith and CFA Chair Greg Smith have disgracefully ignored all emails sent by CFA Officer classification members regarding the CFA’s decision to renege on previous agreements. Further, in a joint submission with the MFB, the CFA have run a jurisdictional argument to block the Commission from arbitrating the rank alignment and relativities matter.
- Meanwhile, the CFA Board confirmed to the UFU that it has entered into a Deed with Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria (VFBV) for funding to the VFBV worth between $2 million to $4 million.
- Further to Bulletin #134, the UFU provides the following draft template per members’ request. If you are a CFA employee of SO classification or above, you may utilise the draft template (below) to send to the CEO and Chair, and copy in Minister Merlino. Alternatively, members may write a more personalised email to their employer, as many members are choosing to do.
- We will continue to keep you informed by way of regular Bulletins and phone conferences.
CFA CEO Paul Smith: Paul.Smith@cfa.vic.gov.au
CFA Chair Greg Smith: firstname.lastname@example.org
CC: Minister James Merlino: James.Merlino@parliament.vic.gov.au
DRAFT TEMPLATE FOR CFA MEMBERS’ USE
Dear Mr Smith and Mr Smith,
I refer to my previous email sent to you regarding rank alignment and relativities, to which I have not yet received a reply.
It is extremely disappointing that the CFA, my employer, has chosen to ignore emails that my colleagues and I have sent to you expressing our disappointment and frustration at your decision to run an argument to block the Fair Work Commission (independent umpire) from arbitrating the important matter of rank alignment and relativities.
I consider myself to be a dedicated and valuable employee of the CFA. The position of [INSERT CLASSIFICATION] requires great dedication to the CFA and is obtained after extensive study via a promotional course. The very classification that I hold is an example of my dedication to not only the CFA as an organisation but, importantly, to the community that I serve.
It has been acknowledged by the CFA and other authorities, including Emergency Management Victoria, that my working environment is increasingly more complex and encompasses delivering enhanced service to the community through increased integration with my emergency service colleagues, including professional career firefighters in the MFB. As such, I am required to understand the extensive emergency management arrangements that underpin the integrated response model.
The amount of time and resources that the United Firefighters Union, my representative, has put into this matter, only to have the CFA and MFB block the Fair Work Commission from making a binding and arbitrated decision, is frustrating to say the least. After approximately 9 months of conciliation, plus preparatory time and efforts of personnel involved in working parties, it is disappointing to see my employer run this technical legal point at the eleventh hour.
After years of hostile CFA Boards and treatment of professional career firefighters and operational staff as second-class citizens, it is also extremely concerning that the CFA and MFB has elected to engage the same commercial law firm that attempted to terminate all conditions of employment for MFB operational employees in 2014.
Finally, my Union wrote to you on my behalf over a week ago requesting the CFA facilitate a meeting of all Officers to explain why the CFA reneged on an agreement to allow the Fair Work Commission to arbitrate and resolve this matter. I have been informed that you have not yet replied to the UFU. I respectfully request that you consider the request and promptly respond to my Union.
I, once again, look forward to your response.
Strength in Unity
READ OUT AT MUSTER AND PIN ON NOTICE BOARD
Authorised by Peter Marshall, Branch Secretary