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Honouring diligence and service
The achievements of members were also considered by the Board in relation to criteria for the National Medal. This award requires "diligent service". This is defined in the National Medal Regulations 1999 as: "a person has served an organisation diligently if, in the opinion of the Chief Officer a) the service given by the person has been conscientious and of good standard and b) in the performance of the service, the person showed good conduct as a member of the organisation."
The Board approved the adoption of this definition which will be communicated to the field. This will clear up confusion expressed in some Districts about eligibility. Members who have displayed a high level of dedication to CFA are eligible for nomination.
The Board meeting also considered the organisational, cultural and physical barriers that currently limit the diversity of CFA - specifically the recruitment and retention of women and members of culturally and linguistically diverse communities as both career staff and volunteer firefighters.
The Board noted the current strategies in place to address this issue, and requested more work on increasing diversity as well as broader research into diversity as an organisational priority.
An inclusive and diverse CFA will reach deeper into more communities across our state; a broad reach that is critical for an emergency service.
The last issue of The Fireman included an article about the development of a policy concerning the acquisition and use of automated external defibrillators (AEDs). AEDs can save the life of someone going into cardiac arrest. The Board approved the policy, allowing brigades and other CFA work locations to buy an AED once the necessary approval and training requirements are met.
Chief Officer Euan Ferguson will be overseas in May representing CFA. In his absence, Regional Manager Alan Davies has been appointed as Acting Chief Officer from 8 May to 17 May 2011.