RCNNDA Workshop #3 - Civil/military cooperation in the new legal and policy environment

Following the 2019/2020 bushfires, the Prime Minister announced a new role for the Commonwealth and in particular the ADF. The Commonwealth would ‘lean in’ and take more initiative when it comes to the use of the ADF in disaster response and recovery. Even before the RC NNDA had handed down its report the Commonwealth flagged amendments to the Defence Act 1903 (Cth) that became law with the passage of the Defence Legislation Amendment (Enhancement of Defence Force Response to Emergencies) Act 2020. What does this new environment look like, what will it mean for incident controllers appointed by state based emergency services and how will the ADF and the states’ emergency services work together?

The RC NNDA recommended that ‘State and territory governments should take steps to ensure that there is better interaction, planning and ongoing understanding of Australian Defence Force capabilities and processes by state and territory fire and emergency service agencies and local governments’.

This workshop will contribute to those ‘steps’ by starting a discussion between those that will have to implement and work with the new legal and policy environment to develop a shared understanding of how emergency response will work in the next catastrophic disaster.


1:30pm - Welcome and introduction by Prof Brendan Sargeant and Dr Michael Eburn.

1:32pm - Group walk-through and discussion of the proposed scenario, led by moderators.

2:55pm - Summary statements by Prof Brendan Sargeant and Dr Michael Eburn.

3pm - Workshop ends.

The scenario is available here.

There will be no publicly available recording of this workshop. A report will be produced instead.

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