History-making firefighting recruits graduate

Thirty-one new Queensland Fire and Emergency Services recruits today donned their “firefighter” epaulettes for the first time as they graduated from the Queensland Fire and Rescue Academy.

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford welcomed the recruits to the professional ranks, noting the record number of women among their cohort.

“Of our 31 graduates, ten are women and that’s a tremendous achievement for QFES,” he said.

“However, all our graduates have had to show the same grit, determination and intelligence to come this far so I congratulate every single one of them.

“The Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to QFES has been unprecedented, with a record budget of $702 million in 2018/2019 and an election promise to get 100 new firefighters on the ground within four years.

“Of them, 25 brand new firefighters began their careers across Queensland last year, and this year’s tranche of 25 has already been allocated.

“This Government is delivering for Queensland and for QFES in a way that only a strong, stable government can.

“Today’s graduates will all play a very important role in their communities and will be relied upon to act when disasters and emergencies strike.”

QFES Commissioner Katarina Carroll said Queensland communities were in safe hands.

“The dedication and hard work shown by these recruits through this first phase of their training reflects our values of respect, integrity, courage, loyalty and trust,” Commissioner Carroll said.

The graduate firefighters received a Certificate II in Public Safety (Fire Fighting and Emergency Operations), which is the culmination of a 78-day intense recruit firefighter training program that includes training in live fire behaviour and road crash rescue.

They will continue their studies for the next two years.

The new firefighters will start their duties in locations including Brisbane, Toowoomba, Gladstone, Rockhampton, Townsville, Innisfail, Cairns, and the Tablelands.

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