FINANCIAL HELP: Rural firefighters like these members of The Caves Rural Fire Brigade will have an easier time applying for compensation for time away from work to fight the region’s bushfires.
FINANCIAL HELP: Rural firefighters like these members of The Caves Rural Fire Brigade will have an easier time applying for compensation for time away from work to fight the region’s bushfires.

Changes to firey’s compo requests revealed

FRESH changes have been announced to the process in which Rural Firefighters and SES members can apply for financial compensation for their work during Australia’s bushfire crisis.

QFES Deputy Commissioner Mike Wassing revealed the modifications to the Volunteer Firefighter Compensation Package in an email sent out to volunteers on Thursday afternoon.

He said Prime Minister Scott Morrison wanted to simplify the application process to allow volunteers to claim up to $200 net income loss, per eligible day of service, without the need for evidence to support their claim.

“If you claim between $200 and $300 for net income lost, you will require evidence of your claim for auditing. The daily maximum you can claim remains $300 and the maximum amount per person $6000,” Mr Wassing said.

“A special consideration has also been added for primary producers, in recognition of the ongoing impact the drought is having on rural incomes.

“Primary producers’ income will be assumed to be $200 per day, regardless of their recent income history which may be lower due to drought.”

Queensland Fire and Rescue Service deputy commissioner Mike Wassing.
Queensland Fire and Rescue Service deputy commissioner Mike Wassing.

Mr Wassing said the same eligibility requirements remained in place.

These eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • You must have volunteered for a minimum of 10 days, in an eligible role, between 1 July 2019 and 30 June 2020.
  • You must be self-employed, or work for a small to medium business, and lost income as a result from volunteering.
  • You can only claim lost income for the days you volunteered, in an eligible role, over the 10 day minimum.

“If you have suffered any financial loss, as a result of volunteering through the current bushfire crisis, I encourage you to apply,” Mr Wassing said.

You can submit an application online at www.qld.gov.au/VolunteerCompensation, or call 1800 268 462.

The Fire and Emergency Services Support Network (call 1300 309 508) will support staff, volunteers and their families during difficult times.