CODE 2, VOL 36, NO 10 : 24 may 2022


As reported in Code 2’s v36#7 and v36#9, QFES senior executives (mostly acting up in their roles at the time) failed to appropriately apply the merit principle in deciding to appoint a public servant as a regional Assistant Commissioner and then attempted to tell your union we couldn’t dispute their mistake.

I can confirm that your union has lodged the dispute at the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) and that a conciliation conference is scheduled for Tuesday 24 May 2022.

It would now seem your senior leaders have realised they may have overstepped their capacity to handle this matter. Last week, QFES wrote to your union asking for our okay to let them be represented by very expensive corporate lawyers.

Everyone in the Fire and Rescue Service has had enough of it. In fact, the Senior Officers Union has been pursuing a similar dispute which they have also lodged at the QIRC. They are standing side by side with your union. I have held discussions with SOU representatives and we have agreed to take on this fight together because we know every single firefighter from Recruit to Chief Superintendent is sick and tired of the constant attempts to devalue the Fire and Rescue Service, our operational experience and our profession. Together we are standing up and fighting back because no one in your senior leadership is doing anything to stop the rot.

I am requesting an urgent meeting with Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Mark Ryan on these matters. Parliament is sitting 24-26 May 2022 so he ought to be available at some point to meet with me. 

The way this is all heading ought to be a stark warning to Commissioner Leach and his Deputy Commissioners (or Acting Deputy Commissioners) and those Assistant Commissioners involved (we know who they are).

You are losing confidence of the men and women of the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service for your continual failure to advocate for the best interests of firefighters and the communities we serve. And you know where it goes to from there.  Here is the recent action from our colleagues in the FBEU (NSW firefighter’s union).

I will provide members with an update on the progress of this matter following the conciliation conference.

John Oliver - General Secretary



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