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Transcript of remarks at meeting with CFA volunteers: Parliament House, Canberra: 10 October 2016: union takeover; volunteer firefighters

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10 October 2016

Remarks at Meeting with CFA Volunteers Parliament House, Canberra



Well Andrew, Nev and all your colleagues, Michaelia and I are here because we said we would stand shoulder-to-shoulder with you, with all of our Victorian colleagues during the election. We said we would stand up to defend you against a union takeover. To defend you against Dan Andrews and Bill Shorten’s effort to put the UFU in charge of your volunteers. And we are now at the point where the Senate has to decide. And this is the moment when Bill Shorten has to decide whether he wants to stand up to the 60,000 volunteers at the CFA. Whether he wants to join us in protecting you in the way you protect Victorians and their property - and you protect Australians, right across the nation.

You and your fellow firefighters keep us safe in the face of the inferno of summer. And we are here to protect you. So all of us here are in total solidarity with you and we’re calling today on Bill Shorten and the Labor Party and all the members of the Senate, to support you, to pass this legislation, that will ensure that your great Australian tradition of volunteering - your 60,000 volunteers, will be supported, defended and you’ll be able to go on in to this summer defending Victorians, their lives and their property in the face of the worst that summer can throw at them.

So we are proud to be with you and we applaud you for the courage and the commitment and the selflessness that you show.