Supportive Employer Program 2016


At a ceremony at NSW RFS Headquarters, Special Commendations were awarded to 12 nominated businesses and self-employed volunteers as part of the NSW RFS Supportive Employer Program.

These employers and self-employed volunteers have gone ‘above and beyond’ to help the NSW RFS and its volunteers to protect the community from bush fires and other emergencies in particular by supporting volunteers and releasing them to attend incidents and other NSW RFS activities during work hours. 

The Special Commendation recipients were nominated by volunteers who wanted to say ‘thank you’ for supporting them. 

The NSW RFS thanks all supportive employers for helping our volunteers give back to the community. 

Avis Western Plains 

Nominated by Daniel Stoner from Boothenba Brigade for allowing him the flexibility to take courses, classes and participate in deployments, both local and abroad. 

Blue Wheelers Pty Ltd 

Nominated by Col Burrow from Empire Bay Brigade for being supportive and releasing him from work to attend NSW RFS activities, and his employer always checks in on his welfare afterwards by giving him a call to ensure he arrived home safely. 

Cowra Toyota 

Nominated by Andrew Vale from Waugoola Brigade for providing time to attend to NSW RFS matters during work hours. Andrew’s employers provide him with the flexibility to attend call outs, as well as other important activities like attending preschools to do fire awareness presentations. 

Dr Abul Salim 

Nominated by Caron Harris, Catriona Pascoe and Deanne Maynards from the Coona Fringe Brigade. Dr Abul Salim employees four NSW RFS volunteers and is nominated for providing his employees with time off to attend call outs and for always being supportive of their involvement with the NSW RFS. 

Karignan Plantation 

Nominated by Simon Smith from Mannering Park Brigade for allowing Simon the flexibility to attend NSW RFS activities, even at short notice – and for having generous volunteer leave provisions that ensure Simon in not financially disadvantaged for attending call outs. 

Mental Health Drug and Alcohol Services, Bloomfield Hospital 

Nominated by Captain Stephanie Huysman from Spring Hill Brigade for their ongoing support, allowing Stephanie to attend emergencies and incidents as well as interstate deployments. 

Nestle Purina Petcare 

Nominated by John Mackie from Blayney Brigade as a business with five NSW RFS volunteers, allowing them time off to attend local incidents and participate in interstate deployments. 

Orora Beverage Cans 

Nominated by Pablo Anwandter from Glenhaven Brigade for actively promoting a work life balance and having an Emergency Service Leave policy, comprising of five days paid leave each year, which supports Pablo to attend call outs during work hours. 

Queanbeyan Local Courts, NSW Department of Justice 

Nominated by Nathan Heerey from Queanbeyan City Brigade for their ongoing flexibility – allowing Nathan to attend local and interstate incidents over a number of years. 

Ravensworth Open Cut 

Nominated by Jason Hayes from Edinglassie Brigade for their flexibility allowing him to attend to call outs during work hours and providing a volunteering leave provision of five days each year. 

Smith Plant Lismore Pty Ltd 

Nominated by Deputy Captain Stephen Battistuzzi from Clunes Brigade for providing their three NSW RFS volunteers with time off during work hours to respond to incidents and for supporting brigade training activities. 

Wingvale Plantation 

Nominated by Captain Neville Battistuuzzi from Clunes Bridage for encouraging volunteering and allowing Neville time off to attend call outs and other brigade duties during work hours. 

Find out more about the NSW RFS Supportive Employer Program. Read the NSW RFS Media Release.