Emergency Services | Australian Greens

Emergency Services

We must keep individuals and communities safe in times of disaster. We need properly staffed and well-resourced services to respond to emergency situations and provide disaster relief.

Principles

  1. Properly staffed and well-resourced emergency services are essential to effectively ensure the safety and security of individuals and communities in times of disaster through a comprehensive system of early warnings, frontline response to emergency situations and provision of recovery assistance and disaster relief.

  2. The provision and adequate resourcing of comprehensive emergency services is a Government responsibility and should include the full funding of services staffed with an appropriate mix of paid professionals and volunteers who are properly trained and equipped, fully insured and appropriately recompensed.

  3. Emergency services must focus on both reducing the risk and improving the management of emergency situations as well as increasing community safety and resilience. This requires increased funding of research into most effective methods of doing so and ensuring that the research findings are implemented at all levels.

  4. All aspects of emergency planning that involve members of the community (e.g. education, warnings, evacuation) should be fundamentally based on up-to-date science in resilience and behaviour change.

  5. Assistance provided to affected communities during and after disasters should recognize the fundamental long-term nature of recovery, which can take up to ten years.

Aims

The Australian Greens Victoria will work towards:

  1. Sufficient government funding and resourcing of state emergency services to enable the comprehensive delivery of rapid detection and effective early response to emergency situations such as fires, storms, floods, accidents and acute health episodes.

  2. Providing inclusive Emergency planning arrangements so that the general community can be empowered to provide solutions and that the arrangements are tailored to their needs. This is especially true of people from sectors of the community who face particular barriers in an emergency, such as those with a disability or from a non-English speaking background.

  3. Establishment of a comprehensive and multi-modal emergency warning system that can effectively alert and inform people of emergency and disaster situations in an appropriate and timely manner.

  4. Emergency services administration being streamlined to ensure that the responses of all emergency services to emergency and disaster situations are comprehensive, coordinated, complementary and seamless.

  5. All urban and rural emergency and disaster services being appropriately staffed by both paid professionals and volunteers who are fully trained, equipped and insured and adequately recompensed for any losses or injuries resulting from their volunteer work.

  6. The work and practices of the emergency services are based on implementing the results of sound research into best practice for prevention and management of disaster and emergency situations and the safety of the public and emergency service workers in these situations.

  7. Increasing funding for research into the most effective ways to minimise both the risk and impact of natural disasters and accidents and the implementation of the research findings.

  8. Providing full government funding and improved integration / coordination of all rural and urban emergency services.

  9. Upgrading and staffing emergency / disaster early detection and warning systems, such as fire spotter towers.

  10. Establishing a comprehensive and integrated public warning and information system to enable the community to access ongoing and current / updated information about emergencies through the telephone system, media and internet.

  11. Ensuring that all emergency services volunteers in both rural and urban areas are appropriately trained and resourced and adequately insured.

  12. Providing appropriate recovery services and assistance for all affected by emergencies / disasters.