Industry Liaison workshop goes virtual

  • Industry Liaison workshop goes virtual image

Amid rolling coronavirus restrictions and after numerous Covid-19 related delays, the New South Wales Department of Industry (NSW DPI) Industry Liaison (IL) workshop was delivered in a virtual format in July.

Jointly delivered by Plant Health Australia (PHA) and NSW DPI, the workshop was attended by 20 industry and government representatives including melons, cotton, berries, forestry, horticulture and local land services.

The IL plays a vital role in an emergency plant pest incident by providing industry perspective and advice on the ground during an emergency plant pest response. In an emergency response, The IL acts on behalf of industry bodies, working with the Incident Management Team in control centres.

The workshop, part of PHA’s National training program for industry liaison, covered the role and responsibilities of the IL representative in a response and the operational practices of jurisdictions during a response. The workshop was made up of three sessions:

  • Biosecurity emergency management systems and emergency response management in New South Wales
  • The IL role and experiences of previous personnel
  • Communications and confidentiality in a response.

The objectives of the workshop were to develop a pool of response ready IL representatives, introduce them to the operational practices of NSW DPI in an emergency response, increase government knowledge of the capabilities of local plant representatives and enhance relationships between industry and NSW Government.

Since commencement of the program in early 2020, the national program has delivered workshops with six of the state and territory governments (Northern Territory, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania, Queensland and NSW) and has commenced planning for a workshop with the Victorian government before the end of the year.

Feedback on the workshop was positive with attendees feeling more confident about undertaking liaison roles in a response and expressing a desire for additional training. PHA and NSW DPI are investigating what the future training might look like.