Thursday, 25 January 2018

Rural Fire Service – Award Variation update

Rural Fire Service – Award Variation update – January 2018 (PDF version)

On the 22 January 2018 your union attended the Industrial Relations Commission (IRC) for the first hearing on the PSA’s application to the vary Crown Employees (Rural Fire Service) Award.

At the hearing, Rural Fire Service (RFS) management did not raise any legal objections to the application, and the hearing progressed as a directions hearing. Commissioner Newall made the following directions for arbitration:

  • 16 February 2018 – PSA to file and serve its evidence and submissions
  • 16 March 2018 – RFS to file and serve its evidence and submissions
  • 23 March 2018 – PSA to file and serve any evidence and submissions in response
  • 28 March 2018 – Date of the hearing in the IRC

Evidence and submissions on issues with overtime

The PSA is seeking members to be witnesses at the hearing and our lawyers are asking that we get a maximum of six witnesses who will provide witness statements that will be submitted as evidence at the hearing. The statements will demonstrate the issues with the RFS Award such as:

  • Non recording of hours
  • Non-payment of overtime
  • Working weekends at single time

The variations we are seeking to the RFS award are based on the range of issues that members have raised. Click HERE to view the award.

PSA member involvement

To put together the witness statements by 16 February 2018, we are asking members to be involved in the following ways:

  • Be prepared to draft a witness statement on what is currently unfair and unreasonable under the current award based on the variations sought (as above)
  • attend the hearing on 28 March 2018 (possibly an extra day) to swear the statement is theirs
  • be asked questions by both the PSA and RFS about their statement.

PSA members who attend the IRC will be entitled to special leave.

The PSA will reimburse members from regional areas for travel and accommodation.

The PSA will also support members in putting together their witness statements.

Register your interest by Wednesday 31 January 2018

We are asking members who would like to be involved as a witness to register their interest by filling in this survey HERE.

Further updates

Your union will continue to update members on the developments with the award variation and will be visiting workplaces to update members.

If you would like to arrange a meeting at your workplace, please email Bart McKenzie at

Your Rural Fire Service Delegates Committee (DC)
Your NSW RFS delegates are:

Jim Killen

Ivan Perkins

Chris Wallbridge

Kam Baker

Ashley Frank

Damian Oborn

Andrew Kaye

Your PSA staff:

Andrew Boulton – PSA Industrial Officer

Bart McKenzie – PSA Senior Organiser

What can you do?

  • Give a copy of this bulletin to your colleagues.
  • Print this bulletin and put it up on your notice board.
  • Ask a colleague to join the PSA.
  • Get involved as your Area Contact