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Agency role supporting communities affected by current flood emergencies

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Coordinator-General for Drought and Flood, the Hon Shane Stone, AC QC has been asked to lead the Australian Government’s support for the ongoing recovery and resilience of communities affected by the current flood emergencies across Eastern Australia.

Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management David Littleproud, has requested the Agency take on this expanded role, which supports the work currently being undertaken by Emergency Management Australia.

While events continue to unfold we know the level of loss and damage will be significant and recovery will take many years. 

At this time the joint Australian/State Government Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) have been enacted across 47 Local Government Areas in New South Wales, and seven in Queensland.

The Government’s request is in no small part due to the successful work the Agency has undertaken to support communities affected by the 2019 North Queensland Monsoon Trough. 

We know from our experience in North Queensland that once the rain stops, the waters starts receding, and the immediate emergency is over, there is still much to be done to support people as they recover, communities as they reconnect and businesses as they rebuild.

Over the two years we’ve worked with these communities, we have proven that a locally led, locally understood and locally implemented approach to flood recovery is paramount. 

It acknowledges that the people most capable of deciding the best ways for their communities and their regions to recover are those who have been through the experience, and who live and work there.

The experiences and the recovery challenges between these two flood events may be different, but the ability for people to determine what they need and when, is not.

The Australian Government’s Recovery Officers – who live in the affected areas - are on the ground providing vital updates and making sure people are tapped into the available support.

The best place for people to find out about the available Australian Government assistance is Recovery Connect.

People can also call the Services Australia Disaster Assistance Line on 180 22 66. 

To learn more about all the ways the Australian Government is assisting with this event, visit the Australian Government’s Disaster Assist website.