Inquiry to Examine NSW Emergency Services Agencies

The NSW Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee has established an Inquiry into emergency services agencies to inquire into and report on the response to bullying, harassment and discrimination within emergency services agencies.

Member for Cessnock, Clayton Barr, advises the Inquiry will examine the support structures offered by emergency services agencies to volunteers and employees who claim they have been subjected to acts of bullying, harassment or discrimination in the workplace.

“It’s important that everyone feels safe in their workplace, and this extends to our emergency services personnel” Mr Barr said.

“By and large our emergency services workers are doing a brilliant job in a wonderful work environment.”

“But at times, we have all seen and heard the terrible workplace stories from within. I hope that there are none of those terrible stories for our local emergency services workers, but if there are, then this is your chance to tell your story and seek justice” Mr Barr said.

The Inquiry will also examine the support services provided to emergency services personnel to assist with mental health issues resulting from workplace trauma.

Research shows that emergency services workers are at greater risk of experiencing anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.

“Our emergency services workers are on the frontline. They are often the first responders to horrific situations and it is important they have access to quality emotional and psychological support” Mr Barr said.

The Committee will consult with individuals and stakeholders from across New South Wales.

“I encourage any interested parties to make a submission so their feedback, suggestions and personal experiences are considered by the Committee”.

The closing date for submissions is 23 July 2017. Submissions can be lodged online at www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/committees under the ‘Portfolio Committee No. 4 – Legal Affairs’ tab.

For more information, including terms of reference and guidelines for making a submission, please visit www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/committees.