"The Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission has not yet published our Report arising from our Independent Review into Equity and Diversity issues within Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) and Country Fire Authority (CFA).
"The Commission recently shared confidential draft extracts from the report with the Agencies and other key stakeholders.
"This allows the Agencies to provide feedback, suggestions and corrections, which the Commission must and will consider before it publishes its Report.
"We regret that notes from a confidential briefing to the MFB appear to have been leaked to the press before the Report is complete. The notes do not necessarily represent the Commission's final report.
"The issues raised in the media reports are nevertheless very important, and will come as no surprise to anyone. The equity and diversity problems within our fire services are well documented over the past few years and the case for change is clear.
"At this stage I expect the Report, when published, will provide positive recommendations on how to make that change happen.
"The Commission remains focused on publishing its Report as soon as possible, after the final consultations have taken place.
"Separately, the Review process is subject to legal proceedings initiated by the United Firefighters Union, which may affect the publication of the Report. The next step in this process is a Court of Appeal hearing set for 16 April.
"The Commission is looking forward to publishing the Report from this important Review in due course. MFB and CFA play a vital role in our community. This Review aims to help ensure a safe and inclusive workplace for its many dedicated staff."
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