CODE 2, VOL 33, NO 25 : 18 december 2019

Christmas and New Year

Once again, the Christmas and New Year period is upon us.

The past few months have been a busy one for most of you with unprecedented response requirements across the state. 

For many people in our communities this period of the year provides much needed time for rest, and an opportunity to reflect on the last 12 months and to spend time with family and friends.

However, it would appear more and more certain that this time of year means business as usual for you and your colleagues. Bushfires, cyclones and floods are a regular occurrence at this time of year and this is likely to mean that many of you will be working long and hard protecting your communities or handling vital communications during this period.

We dedicate our lives to serving our communities. The work we do can be extremely rewarding, but it can also be tough. Separation from family and friends can be difficult at this time of year. But, as peers, we look out for each other.

For those of us that may find this time of year difficult, remember, help is there if you need it.

On behalf of the UFUQ, I wish every member a safe and happy Christmas and New Year. I look forward to working with you all in 2020.


In recent years there has been some confusion regarding public holiday dates for the Christmas and New Year period due to Christmas Day, Boxing Day and/or New Year’s Day falling on a Saturday or Sunday.

However, there should be little confusion regarding this Christmas and New Year period.

For the 2019/2020 period, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and/or New Year’s Day fall on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and therefore there are no ‘additional’ public holidays provided.

The public holiday dates for Christmas and New Year for 2019/2020 are as follows –

Christmas Eve – 6pm onwards
Tuesday, 24 December 2019

Christmas Day
Wednesday, 25 December 2019

Boxing Day
Thursday, 26 December 2019

New Year’s Day
Wednesday, 1 January 2020

Please be aware that the public holiday provisions and arrangements relevant to your work situation and roster will apply for each of these days.

If an error is made by QFES and/or Queensland Shared Services (QSS) regarding your wages for these dates, in the first instance, please ensure you raise the issue with your regional HR contact as soon as possible.

If an issue remains unresolved, subsequent to contacting regional HR, please notify your local UFUQ representative for assistance.


This information is specifically for members who would ordinarily be entitled to the payment of additional hours on a public holiday.

On the Christmas Eve part-day public holiday (i.e. Tuesday 24 December 2019), if you are not rostered to work or on annual leave or long service leave between the hours of 1800 and 2400 you will receive an additional 2 hours pay for the day (this includes B shift).

This is a proportionate entitlement of the ordinary 8 hours, additional pay because the Christmas Eve part-day public holiday spans one quarter of the hours of a normal public holiday.

For members who would ordinarily not be entitled to the payment of additional hours on a public holiday, you will receive relevant public holiday penalty rates if you work between the hours of 1800 and 2400 on Christmas Eve.

This new part-day public holiday was only gazetted (added into the public holidays legislation) in late November by the Queensland state government.

Your union used the new consultation provisions in CA19 to raise the matter with Fire and Rescue and I am pleased to report that open and positive dialogue occurred between the parties. The matter was handled by the newly formed Agency Consultative Committee (which has already had two meetings), and your union and Fire Rescue were able to promptly reach agreement on the entitlements that will apply.


While the UFUQ state office remains open year round, please be advised that administration staff will be on annual leave from Friday 20 December 2019 until Monday 6 January 2020.

If you require anything from administration during this time such as a change of address or contact details, including station, rank, bank account details or personal email address, please forward your changes to [email protected] or update on our website here. The UFUQ office administration staff will ensure all administrative matters are dealt with on their return.

If you urgently need to speak to a union representative during this period, it is best that you contact your local UFUQ branch representative or SCM representative in the first instance. If further assistance is required, they will be in contact with UFUQ industrial officers over this period.

You can find the contact details for your local UFUQ branch representative or SCM representative here.

John Oliver - General Secretary




Authorised by John Oliver General Secretary 
United Firefighters' Union of Australia, Union of Employees QLD