Liberal Leader Matthew Guy has once again been caught out telling lies as he continues his dishonest campaign of using our hardworking firefighters as political footballs.
Standing with embattled Shadow Minister for Emergency Services Brad Battin, just days after he’d made disgraceful slurs against Black Saturday firefighters, Matthew Guy claimed volunteer firefighter numbers in NSW are less than in Victoria:
“Volunteer numbers in NSW are much lower than Victoria, particularly per capita.”
Matthew Guy, Press Conference, 19 May 2017
This is a lie and yet another example of Matthew Guy shooting his mouth off to try and make a political point.
The Annual Report of the NSW Rural Fire Service confirms that the organisation had 73,162 volunteers in 2015/16, while the Victorian CFA Annual Report shows it had 57,111 volunteers in the same year.
Mr Guy’s claim about per capita levels of volunteers is also completely wrong.
The latest Productivity Commission Report on Government Services shows that in 2015/16 NSW had 1,163 volunteer firefighters per 100,000 people, while Victoria had 954.1 volunteer firefighters per 100,000.
Matthew Guy just can’t help himself.
After the Victorian Budget 2017/18, the Liberal Leader said it contained “not one cent” for community safety. The Budget delivers around $5 billion for community safety, including more police, family violence services, and more investment in corrections.
This is a pattern of behaviour and follows his Shadow Emergency Services Minister making disgusting comments about Black Saturday firefighters in the Parliament.
“When we go back to February 2009, the minister should be able to tell us how many career firefighters were on the firefighting ground on 7 February for the first 5 1⁄2 hours of Black Saturday. I can tell the house that it was zero.” Brad Battin, Legislative Assembly, 10 May 2017
These comments are untrue, incredibly hurtful and an insult to all firefighters who served on Black Saturday – a day that claimed the lives of 173 people.
The Andrews Labor Government is getting on with the changes needed to modernise the state’s fire services, which both protect the CFA as a volunteer organisation and create Fire Rescue Victoria, based on other successful police and emergency services organisations, including the model in New South Wales.
Quotes attributable to Deputy Premier and Minister for Emergency Services James Merlino
“Matthew Guy’s credibility is in tatters after his latest lies about firefighters.”
“Not only does he continue to fully support Brad Battin – who made disgusting claims about our Black Saturday heroes – Matthew Guy continues to say anything so he can keep using firefighters as political footballs.”
“One thing is clear: you can’t trust a single word Matthew Guy says.”