Considerations for Members on the FENZ Volunteer Brigade Leader Development and Review process consultation

Issue date:

The UFBA has been approached by members who have put forward suggestions for the UFBA’s submission on the FENZ Volunteer Brigade Leader Development and Review process consultation, which we are currently working on. We have identified some common themes from members, which we would like to share with you for consideration when making your submission.

  • Current and standing Agreements being honoured
    • New Volunteer Engagement Model with FENZ – it is unclear how this proposal can go ahead without the development, consultation, and agreement of any new engagement model, agreements of service or brigade rules of Association for built environment brigades (Urban)
    • Natural Brigades (Rural) may be signing up for more than what they signed up for in their agreements with FENZ which were signed by rural brigades on 1 July 2017.
  • Group Manager accountability and accreditation
    How are the Group Managers consistently qualified and competent to run the appointment, annual review, and reappointment of volunteer brigade leaders?
    • What is the framework for GMs to do this?
  • Training
    • With the lack of current funding for training, there is no confidence in the future to better support GMs or volunteer brigade leaders.
    • It appears that the existing brigade leaders who choose to not opt-in are excluded from the support and development of leaders – is it right to discriminate those who are currently performing those roles? Strong sustainable brigades must be the focus surely?
    • There is no visibility on what the time commitment will be for new brigade leaders however the position descriptions are significant in content, performance, and accountability.
  • Annual Performance Review
    • What is the purpose and outcome of the Annual Progress Review should the volunteer brigade leader not be performing to the criteria mid-5 year term?
  • Operational vs people leaders
    Volunteer brigade leader roles encompass both people leading and technical knowledge. While the people leader component is importantly the majority of the role, the operational/technical role is also critical due to the nature and scale of incidents they attend which can sometimes escalate to 3rd alarms before incident management support arrives.  
    • What alternative provisions will be made within brigades to have an appropriate level of in-house command capacity and capability if leaders are light on these skills?

The UFBA will be making a submission on behalf of the membership, and while we encourage you to do your own submission, if you do not have the time to complete the FENZ feedback form, members are encouraged to send us their thoughts and we will consider them in our submission - connect@ufba.org.nz

Kia kaha kia kotahi ra
Our strength is our unity