Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 11 Hansard (Wednesday, 23 September 2015) . . Page.. 3415 ..

MS FITZHARRIS: Minister, how will our SES volunteers, who have some of the best rescue skills in Australia, be able to showcase their skills and aptitude through this competition?

MS BURCH: It is true that in the ACT we are fortunate to have volunteers with some of the best rescue skills in Australia, and we should be tremendously proud of that. Whilst our local team did not win this year’s challenge, we can be assured that they had a fantastic time and continued to foster relationships with members of the SES from other states across Australia while demonstrating and attaining valuable skills. The challenge is an opportunity for state and territory service volunteers from across Australia to display their skills and enjoy some well-earned accolades and recognition for the valuable work that they do.

When an opportunity such as the rescue challenge presents itself, it encourages rescue units to showcase different approaches to disaster and rescue activities and allows the great work that our volunteers do to be seen and to be recognised by our community. As we know, our SES members work tirelessly through the year and they are an incredibly dedicated group of men and women who have undertaken significant training to hone their skills and who volunteer their time to keep the Canberra community safe.

As members in this place may recall, earlier this year I spoke about the assistance that our SES volunteers provided to New South Wales during some severe storm events in Sydney and surrounds. To date the SES have responded to a total of 528 calls in our community in this year alone and, in addition to the skills that are displayed in real-time events, the opportunity to demonstrate their ability through healthy competition is appreciated by all.

As the host jurisdiction for this year’s challenge, each SES unit designed a scenario for teams to undertake that focused on core SES skills. These scenarios were located at ESA training headquarters, Springbank Island and a number of SES units around Canberra. Included in the scenarios were casualty management, general rescue, staging area management—(Time expired.)

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Minister, how does the rescue challenge contribute to the strong relationships that the ACT SES has developed across jurisdictions, including assistance provided during times of need, and highlight the different skills and training offered in other jurisdictions?

MS BURCH: I thank Dr Bourke for his interest. The national rescue challenge does indeed contribute to building those relationships across jurisdictions in a spirit of cooperation that was on display from teams from all states and territories bar, I think, Western Australia. For the interest of Dr Bourke, this year the six-person team from Kiama, representing New South Wales, came out on top. Along with our ACT SES I would like to congratulate the Kiama team.

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video