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Update: CFA Inclusion and Fairness
In May 2017, CFA appointed a dedicated Assistant Chief Officer Steve Smith to lead our inclusion work.
Inclusion and Fairness is about improving and driving how CFA staff and volunteers engage with each other and the broader community equitably.
Put simply, that means putting an organisational spotlight on how we treat each other, understand the communities we protect, and drive respect across CFA.
Steve says being an inclusive and fair organisation is not about repeating a mantra, but about doing the right thing from the top down.
"We recognise there is a need to do much more to ensure CFA is reflective of the communities it protects and CFA people are more than ready to embrace change.”
Three new staff have joined the Inclusion and Fairness team this month, supporting Steve and CFA to build on the work already underway.
The team consists of Jade Bibby, Jodie Henry and Liz Campbell. Jade brings program coordination experience from CFA’s Organisational Wellbeing team while Liz comes from a program management background in the public and private sectors. Jodie comes from a communications and community engagement background focusing on social purpose and inclusion.
This team will build on the work started by Angela Seach and her team including Sherri McKerley and Tim Firman. The work developed included the Inclusion and Fairness framework and plan, establishment of the Inclusion and Fairness Advisory Council, Inclusion and Fairness awareness workshops for CFA leaders and work ahead of the release of the government commissioned Equity and Diversity Review into Victoria’s fire services by the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights commission (VEOHRC). Angela and the team will now shift focus to support delivery of the organisational development priorities within the People and Culture Plan.
This report is expected to be released in the second half of 2017.
“VEOHRC will provide recommendations but it will be up to us to drive change. We’re not waiting for VEOHRC to ensure we raise the bar on behavioural issues, but we will welcome any feedback the report provides.”
Steve emphasises creating change to improve culture across CFA will be an ongoing journey, one that all staff and volunteers will be part of.