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Parliamentary record : Part I debates (16 August 1990)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (16 August 1990)


Debates for 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Northern Territory Legislative Assembly

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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--'pEBATE5_- lbur~q_aLLLA~]us:t 19~O ___ _ That has been refused, and the edi ct issued by the prev i ous direct i on has not been countermanded to date. It was said at the meeting that the result of this situation will be that people who want to burn and have a permit will proceed to burn without the attendance of the volunteer bushfire brigade. Such burn-offs may not be done at the right t imeor in the right way and may turn into wild. fires , in which case the volunteer bushfire brigade will be called out to attend a much larger fire than would have been the case if they.had been allowed to attend the permit burn in the first place. To return to the edict issued by the former Director of the Fire Service, I believe that, with a little wisdom and elasticity in policy, a further edict coul~ be issued by the current director to allow the vo 1 unteer bushfi re bri gades to be master of thei r own des tiny. They are 1 oca 1 volunteers who know the 1 oca 1 s ituat i on. They are a 11 good soli d citizens. They have given up hundreds of hours of theirrown time to help control and prevent fires in their local community. They will ,not do .stupid things and they wi 11 look after the community interest. It is a case of horses for courses. It would be very easy for the Director of the Fire Service to say that, if the local volunteer bushfire bri gades wish to attend permit burns, they c.an do so and, if -they do not wi sh to attend, they need not do so. The matter cou 1 d be 1 eft to the di scret i on of the bri gades themselves. They are the peop 1 e on the ground and it is only by educating people in this way that we will get sensible control and management of fire. I am not talk i ng about whether it is necessary to burn off or whether it is not necessary to burn off. That is another issue. I am talking about actual permission or lack of permission for these volunteer bushfire bri gades to attend permit burns. The bushfi re bri gades under the control of the Bushfires Council are allowed to do it, and they do it quite safely, maki ng use of thei r serv ices to ra i se money for thei r bri gades wh i 1 st helping and educating theiT communities. The other group of bushfire bri gades cannot do th is. I believe that, in the interests of cons i stency throughout the rural area, the Di rector of the Fi re Servi ce shou 1 d take another look at the policy determined by his predecessor. Mr EDE (Stuart): Mr Speaker, toni ght I -wou1 d 1 ike to say a few words about Dr Trevor Cutter, a very good friend of mine who passed away recently after a battle with cancer. Trevor was a young man. He was born in Melbourne and he did not come from a wealthy fami ly. At the very best, his family could be described as lower middle class. His father was a St John Ambulance officer, but Trevor always wanted to be a doctor. His family cou 1 d not eas i1y afford to educate him. However, he was educated by means of a scho 1 arsh i p that he won. Eventually, he graduated from Monash. Later, he became a Fellow of the Royal Australian College of Physicians, graduating in record time at the top of his class. Trevor Cutter came to central Australia in the mid-1970s and worked on the establishment of the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress. He was still there when I became the director.in 1978. He had an incredible amount to do with the growth and development of that organ i sat ion.; He di d not work only in the Northern Territory. He worked' at various times in Papua New Guinea and among the hill tribes and refugee camps in Thailand. He did other work in Ind i a and Mex i co as a consu ltant with the World Hea lth Organisation. He worked in Eritrea and was in great demand by international bodies to assess situations and design health services. No matter where he 9973