How will Fire and Emergency work as one organisation so we are better able to serve New Zealand now and in the future?

That’s the question we are exploring as we bring urban and rural fire together in the integration phase over the next three years.

Fire and Emergency is working together with our unions, associations and partner organisations in a series of workshops between now and mid-December to look at how we can develop our strengths as an organisation and consider new approaches to how we work.

From early next year, Fire and Emergency will engage more widely with our people to share the initial thinking and seek input on how Fire and Emergency could work as an integrated organisation. We call it the ‘operating model’ – put simply, it’s an agreed way of how we work together.

Piki Thomas (Pou Herenga Māori, National Māori Adviser) is one of about 40 of our people joining the discussions.

Piki (pictured) said: “It’s a really exciting time for our organisation. As an individual you can shape our future – how we operate and develop.”

He encouraged people to have their say from early next year when input is invited: “We’d like you to be involved in the discussions so don’t ‘watch from the stands’, come and be part of the work underway to help make a rich future for our organisation to stand the test of time.”

The operating model will help Fire and Emergency be well placed to tackle changing risks in New Zealand with an ageing population, climate change and the population shift from rural to urban areas.

It will look at aspects including new capability areas, the needs and risks of our communities and how we can be organised to be more flexible and adaptable to meet those needs.

At this stage we are aiming to be ready to engage and consult with our people on the final draft operating model from mid-2018. When that process is complete we will start putting the agreed arrangements in place, towards full unification from 2020.

We will have more information for you in the new year. If you have questions or concerns in the meantime, ask your manager or contact us at

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