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Government across all levels to fight disasters

Updated: Oct 29, 2020

Involving every tier of government in a national plan before, during and after a bushfire will build national resilience in an era of more frequent, more destructive and compound disasters.

Multi-stakeholder resilience specialist Renae Hanvin, in response to the Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements’ recent focus on the responsibilities and roles of each tier of government during bushfire, has called on the Federal Government to support the establishment of an independent national resilience alliance.

“The Royal Commission heard in May from scientists that Australia faces even more dangerous bushfire conditions in the future,’’ Ms Hanvin said. “We all need to be prepared for this new normal and become familiar with the `prepare, respond, recovery’ routine.’’

However, no government could continue to shoulder the economic or procedural burden of disaster recovery alone.

The need for cross-tier government co-operation and business support was inevitable.

It was time government took part in activating the notion of “shared responsibility’’ that enabled collective contribution to disaster resilience. That could be achieved by the Resilient Australia Alliance (RAA), a private-public alliance model developed by corporate2community after four years of global and local research.

Founder of corporate2community and creator of the RAA, a private-public alliance to build a nation of all-hazards resilience, Ms Hanvin said the Federal Government must “put a stop to the reactive, post disaster pop-up approach that comes after the likes of floods, bushfires or the current pandemic’’.

Included in her organisation’s response to the Bushfire Royal Commission, Ms Hanvin said the current system of individual government departments and agencies working in silo towards their own mandate was not economically efficient or effective.

“It is time to support an apolitical and sustainable model that activates these efforts, a model that is not impacted by portfolio and machinery of government staff turnover.”

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Norman Lindsay Gallery, Faulconbridge.

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The old Lucasville Station platform and stairs on the Lapstone Zig Zag track.

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