AUXILIARY UPDATE : 23 march 2015

Meeting with new fire and emergency minister

I have met with the new fire and emergency minister and explained that your union would like to maintain an ongoing, constructive and professional dialogue with her.

One of the issues we had with the previous government was their reluctance to meet or communicate constructively with the union.

I expect to maintain professional communication with the government to ensure that members’ views and concerns are considered.

Pre-election commitments

I am following up with the incoming government regarding their pre-election commitments, particularly those which affect our members, such as ‘presumptive legislation’.

Auxiliary award

As we have previously reported, prior to the last election your union secured commitments from both major political parties to support the making of an award for auxiliary firefighters. The fire service still have not given any indication as to what they are prepared to agree to.

Your union has raised the issue with the new government and minister.

Your union has also written to every MP of the new parliament and set out the history of the efforts made by your union to win you your first award, and the obstruction and legal obstacles used by the fire service and previous government to deny your right to a fair hearing about basic employment conditions.

Unfair contracts

As previously reported your union defeated the fire service’s attempts to ‘strike out’ the ‘unfair contracts’ case. The fire service appealed against our win and a court hearing to hear their arguments is set down for April 27th.

In typical fashion the fire service have twice failed to file their written submissions on time and court directions have been varied to accommodate their lateness.

At this stage we understand their arguments to be, simply that fire service commissioners can set whatever employment conditions they want, and no one can do anything about it.

Where to from here?

Your union intends to maintain our efforts to win fair employment conditions for auxiliary firefighters. You are the only state government employees who do not have the respect of an award or the respect of basic, community standard employment conditions.

Become a member of UFUQ and show your support

2014 saw many new members join or re-join UFUQ.  We want to continue to increase our strength in 2015.

Become a member of your union to show you are standing with your auxiliary colleagues as we continue the fight to improve your employment conditions and wages.

As a member, you also have access to the many benefits of coverage you will receive from a registered industrial organisation.

If you are already a member of UFUQ, now is the time to discuss membership of your union with your auxiliary colleagues.

Existing members who refer new members will receive a new auxiliary UFUQ t-shirt in 2015, upon the new member becoming financial (one t-shirt per year for existing members).

Your union continues to send a strong and clear message to QFES and the government about your employment conditions.  We are showing them that we have the support of auxiliaries in our efforts to win fair employee conditions for you.

UFUQ needs your support now and will be there to support youshould you ever need us!

Have a question or want to organise a station visit?

In 2014, UFUQ representatives visited almost 60 auxiliary stations.

No one but UFUQ can get, or is getting, to that many stations to talk to auxiliary firefighters about their individual, local station and state wide issues, not even QFES.

The plan for 2015 includes many more station visits.

Contact the state office if you would like to organise someone to discuss what the union is doing with members and potential members in a visit to your station.

Station visits can be done in person, via teleconference or via Skype.

The station visits can be done on training nights, or another night as arranged.  If we haven’t seen you, we hopeto see you in 2015!

Auxiliary representatives

Auxiliaries are represented on the state committee of management of the union and there is a standing agenda item for an auxiliary update to be given at every union executive meeting.

You can contact the state office at any time to discuss membership, or any other matter affecting your employment.

The UFUQ has an industrial officer dedicated to assisting auxiliaries with all employment related matters, so if you have a work related question, contact the state office and you will receive the appropriate assistance.