The Inspector-General for Emergency Management (IGEM) would like to provide a 3rd update on progress of the independent Inquiry into the 2019–20 Victorian fire season.

Inquiry Phase 1 – Preparedness and response

The Phase 1 report focusing on the preparedness for and response to the 2019–20 Victorian fire season was delivered to the Victorian Government on 31 July 2020.

Arrangements for tabling of the report in Parliament are at the discretion of the Minister for Police and Emergency Services.

Once tabled, the report and community submissions received during Phase 1 will be publicly available from this website.

Inquiry Phase 2 – Relief and recovery

Phase 2 of the Inquiry focuses on the effectiveness and progress of relief and recovery activities and arrangements during and after the 2019–20 Victorian fire season.

We had a terrific response from the community in Phase 1 of the Inquiry and encourage affected community members to now focus on the following Phase 2 ‘matters for consideration’ as they prepare their written submissions:

  • effectiveness of immediate relief and recovery work and arrangements, including at the regional and incident levels
  • creation of Bushfire Recovery Victoria, the National Bushfire Recovery Agency and how these entities work together for the benefit of affected Victorian communities, including consideration of long-term efforts directed at social, economic (including small business, tourism and agricultural sectors) and environmental recovery
  • effectiveness of how roles and responsibilities for recovery have been divided between Emergency Management Victoria and Bushfire Recovery Victoria.

IGEM acknowledges that for many people, recovery can be a long-term process. Therefore, we’re undertaking the engagement in two stages:

  • during the first stage we’ll gather feedback about the effectiveness of the emergency relief and initial recovery activities (first six months after the fires)
  • during the second stage, we’ll gather feedback on the progress and effectiveness of recovery activities in the medium term (12+ months after the fires).

We would like to hear from individuals and organisations about: 

  • how the 2019-20 Victorian fires affected you 
  • what worked well in the delivery of emergency relief and recovery activities during the first 6 months
  • what didn’t work as well as you would have expected or preferred
  • your suggestions for improvement. 

We also recognise the added challenges the coronavirus emergency (External link) is having on bushfire recovery, and encourage individuals and communities to share these impacts during the engagement process.

All community views about relief and recovery provided during Phase 1 of the Inquiry will be considered in Phase 2. While our focus is on the effectiveness and progress of relief and recovery activities and arrangements, information relating to Phase 1 can still be provided.

 Submissions addressing the Inquiry’s Terms of Reference for Phase 2 can be made through: 

Please help spread the word by sharing this community update with others.

For further information, questions, or suggestions please contact our community engagement advisor, Anne-Louise Lindner by email  (External link) or phone 03 8684 7900.



[Image: Bonang Road south of Goongerah/IGEM]