Tony Pearce - Victoria's first Inspector-General for Emergency Management - shares a brief history of his office and role, and highlights from assurance activities conducted since his appointment in July 2014.


You can read more about IGEM's history and activities in Our First Five Years


Video transcript

Hi, I'm Tony Pearce, Victoria's Inspector-General for Emergency Management.

The Inspector-General for Emergency Management was created on the first of July in 2014, following Royal Commissions into the Victorian bushfires and the flood reviews from 2010, 2011.

IGEM has two primary objectives as legislation.

The first of these is to provide assurance to government and the community with respect to the emergency management arrangements and the second is to foster continuous improvement of those arrangements.

We do this through a number of different ways.

We conduct evaluations and reviews out of our own office, some of which are as a result of a planned approach where we identify with our stakeholders each year a number of topics that we think we would get value out of conducting reviews from and the second way is through a request from our minister or from another minister through our minister for us to conduct a review into generally something that has occurred in an emergency context, for example the thunderstorm asthma emergency that occurred in 2016.

In addition to our evaluation and review function, we're also responsible for monitoring.

We have an implementation monitoring function which effectively is ensuring that any recommendations that have been accepted by government from any level of review, whether it be ourselves or a Royal Commission, or an independent inquiry, to ensure that those recommendations, once accepted, have been implemented and are fully acquitted.

Our performance monitoring function is more one where we are looking at the performance of agencies such as the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority to ensure that any standards that are agreed between them and their stakeholder clients, such as the emergency service organisations are actually being delivered in a way that is expected.

IGEM has recently reached a major milestone, which is our fifth year of actually functioning as an office and as a result of that, we've produced a document here that actually gives the reader a bit of an understanding of where we've come from over that five years and what we've achieved.

The Assurance Framework for Emergency Management is a principles based document that governs the way in which IGEM conducts its business.

Not only that, all organisations have a responsibility for providing assurance and being satisfied that they're meeting their objectives and they also refer to this document on a regular basis.

Victoria will continue to be challenged by emergencies both natural and human induced, and I'm sure that you would have seen in recent times on the news these emergencies seem to be occurring far more frequently.

In many cases, they're lasting for longer than they have done in the past, and also delivering often unanticipated outcomes.

It's very important that the Inspector-General for Emergency Management continues to work with its stakeholders and partners, and the community to ensure that we are as well placed as we can to deal with these events into the future.