The Federal Government releases public submissions regarding Australia’s disaster resilience planning

In the aftermath of Queensland being severely impacted by back-to-back ex-Tropical Cyclones in a short period of time, the Federal Government is considering ways to future-proof Australia’s preparedness for natural disasters.  

Last year, the Department of Home Affairs had released a discussion paper that sought views from the public and relevant stakeholders, focusing on how the Federal Government could better provide disaster assistance to states and territories.  

Through this process, a number of written public submissions were received. The government has now released those public submissions that responded to the Alternative Commonwealth Capabilities for Crisis Response Discussion Paper. 

One of the objectives of the Discussion Paper was to explore options that would help lessen the reliance on the Australian Defence Force (ADF) during community aid and disaster recovery efforts, in line with recommendations from the 2023 Defence Strategic Review. 

More than 240 organisations were engaged through 26 roundtables and other means to ensure that the Discussion Paper was engaging important stakeholders from critical sectors and emergency management.  

Minister for Emergency Management Murray Watt emphasised the need for a long-term solution that would help with disaster preparedness. 

“This Discussion Paper has had input from a wide range of Australians, and I thank the people who submitted their view,” Minister Watt said.  

“This Discussion Paper has helped to bring together a range of expertise that can be called upon in a disaster. 

“[The Federal Government] will continue to listen to stakeholders to inform how we ensure we’re better prepared to respond to future disaster events.” 

Two federal agencies – the Department of Home Affairs and the National Emergency Management Agency – will rely on the Discussion Paper and subsequent public submissions to inform a future policy direction.  

Public submissions on the Discussion Paper can be viewed on the Department of Home Affairs website here.