Sydney/NSW Trains – Critical Incident Response Procedure
As members will be aware, the Sydney/NSW Trains Critical Incident Response procedure has now been expanded to include all employees of Sydney Trains as a part of the recent EA negotiations.
The Loco Division has been heavily involved and supportive of this procedure and its application for train crew and as such, has commenced a review of both Sydney and NSW Trains application of the procedure and importantly, the utilisation of the Peer Support role.
Whereas this procedure has been a documented success in Sydney Trains since initial inception, NSW Trains have been slower off the mark to fulfil the Peer Support roles across their business however, we are now advised that 33 employees are now trained in those roles.
Sydney Trains originally recruited 110 train crew into the Peer Support role however, these numbers have dwindled since its conception. Following discussions with both businesses regarding the Peer Support role and the obvious benefits to RTBU members and the businesses, a program will be implemented to recruit additional Peer Support crew in order to provide expanded support structures for crew involved in Critical Incidents.
The importance of this expansion will obviously allow for greater resources to be available and more importantly, reduce the workload of the existing Peer Support volunteers who may be psychologically impacted by excessive exposure to these events.
Additionally, the RTBU has held discussions with both businesses regarding the provision of physiological assistance for Peer Support volunteers through the Beyond Blue organisation in order to provide them additional support. Peer Support volunteers provide amazing support to their work colleagues during and following these traumatic events, quiet often in their own time, which largely goes unrecognised, a situation which the RTBU will seek to be righted. Once the RTBU becomes aware that a further recruitment will commence, members will be advised and the Loco Division strongly encourages its members to participate in this important role which, after all, is about helping a workmate.