Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says she asked Scott Morrison “to compensate Queensland volunteer firefighters” in the same way NSW brigades were.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says she asked Scott Morrison “to compensate Queensland volunteer firefighters” in the same way NSW brigades were.

Annastacia Palaszczuk urges PM to compensate firefighters

THE day after a Queensland Minister called the Prime Minister's offer of cash for volunteer firefighters "insulting", the Premier said she wants firies compensated.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk took to social media this morning, saying she had written to Prime Minister Scott Morrison "urging him to compensate Queensland volunteer firefighters" in the same way NSW brigades were.

It is despite Mr Morrison making this offer to the Premier on Saturday night and Police Minister Mark Ryan saying it was "insulting".

The Premier and the PM have gone head-to-head over volunteer firefighter pay. Photo: News Corp Australia
The Premier and the PM have gone head-to-head over volunteer firefighter pay. Photo: News Corp Australia

The Premier's office on Sunday said they wanted one national deal, not an offer to individual states.

The South Australian Government yesterday confirmed its volunteers would receive the same financial support as their NSW counterparts and the Victorian Government said it would seek access to the payments.

But only this morning Ms Palaszczuk said she wanted Queensland volunteers to receive the same Federal Government compensation as NSW.

"There should be a nationally consistent approach and this should have been the case from day one," she said.

"That's what I told the Prime Minister on the phone on Saturday evening.

"I want to thank our volunteers who are spending time away from their families to fight bushfires."

Mr Morrison said NSW received the money first because its government specifically requested it, while he received no such request from any other state.

"The program was initiated in response to a request I received from NSW, where there is an immediate problem, to assist with the firefighting effort in that state," Mr Morrison said yesterday.

 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced last week that the Federal Government will pay volunteer firefighters in New South Wales up to $6000 in compensation for loss of income they face while fighting fires. Picture: AAP/Bianca De Marchi
Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced last week that the Federal Government will pay volunteer firefighters in New South Wales up to $6000 in compensation for loss of income they face while fighting fires. Picture: AAP/Bianca De Marchi

 

"I have not received any such request from Queensland or any other state on this issue.

"Given the scheme is retrospective for the current fire season, no Queenslander, who would be eligible, will miss out if the State Government decides to take up the federal offer.

"It is disappointing that Labor in Queensland are reacting this way after the positive discussion I had with the Premier (Monday) night."



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