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Frequently Asked Questions


What is ACREM?

ACREM is the Australian Citizens Radio Emergency Monitors Incorporated, a group of volunteers that provide a monitoring service on the CB emergency channels and also represent CB enthusiasts to various government agencies on matters that may affect the CB bands and emergency channels.

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What are the objectives of ACREM?

The PRIMARY objectives of ACREM are:

  1. To serve and provide assistance to the community through the use of the CBRS network (27 MHz HF and 477MHz UHF bands), and other forms of radiocommunications, in particular to establish and maintain voluntary monitoring services to process;
    1. emergency communications involving the immediate safety of life of individuals or the immediate protection or safety of property; and
    2. emergency communications involving the potentially immediate safety of life of individuals or the potentially immediate safety of property; and
    3. communications necessary to render assistance to travellers and the community as a whole.
  2. To provide communications support and/or support personnel to recognised emergency services, welfare organisations, and government agencies, during times of need, or when requested.

The SECONDARY objectives of ACREM are:

  1. To provide community organisations, sporting groups, and other organisations with safety communications and/or personnel to assist in safety roles, as required, to help ensure the safety of persons participating in activities and members of the community.
  2. To provide support to community crime prevention and safety programmes.
  3. To do such other lawful things as may appear to be incidental or conductive to the above objects, or any of them, or that may be deemed as beneficial to the community in general.

The PRIMARY goal of ACREM remains the provision of voluntary monitoring services on the CB emergency channels, as detailed in objective (i) of our Primary objectives. All other activities are secondary to this goal.

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How do I join ACREM?

To join ACREM simply download the appropriate Application for Membership form (for NSW, Queensland or Victoria), fill it in and return it by either post, fax or email, or if you prefer complete the Apply Online form. Once your application is received you will be contacted to discuss your application and interests further.

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What qualifications or experience do I need to join?

None! Those joining ACREM as a Monitor will be trained in basic radio procedures and monitoring techniques. Where you reside some distance from any existing Division or Monitor capable of training you in person, arrangements will be made to complete the training by "distance education" so you are not required to travel great distances just to attend a training weekend. If you join as an Associate Member, then there is no training involved as this is a non-operational form of membership.

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What equipment do I need to join?

If you wish to become a Monitor you will need to have at least a UHF CB, and preferably a 27MHz SSB CB as well, set up as a base station. A fixed telephone service, preferably close to the radio setup, is also required for Monitors. In some circumstances ACREM may be able to help with short term loans of equipment. Uniforms are optional and are not required by any member unless they choose to buy one. Where uniforms are required for any reason ACREM will endeavour to make these items available at a reasonable cost. Associate Members need no equipment at all to join.

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Is ACREM authorised to monitor CB emergency channels?

Yes! In Australia there are no restrictions on who may or may not monitor the CB emergency channels or respond to calls. ANY person has the legal right to do these if they so desire, however ACREM, and other similar groups, have been providing these services for many years and train their Monitors in various aspects of radio communications and monitoring procedures. Many independent Monitors also prefer to join a group so they form part of a larger network, and for the backing the group provides when dealing with the various government agencies.

For more information see our Rescue Accreditation page

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Is ACREM accredited by any state rescue management authority?

Each state has an authority or body that deals with the regulation, accreditation and operation of the various emergency and rescue services in that state. This authority also makes and implements plans appointing certain groups to provide specific services in cases of emergencies. However, the monitoring of the CB emergency channels does not fall under the control or jurisdiction of these authorities and as such CB emergency monitoring groups or activities are not regulated or accredited by these bodies. ACREM has, in the past, written to various state and federal emergency management agencies seeking that such activities be accredited at a federal level by Emergency Management Australia, however at this stage no emergency management authority has chosen to look at this any further.

For more information see our Rescue Accreditation page

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Another CB group is accredited by the NSW State Rescue Board, what about ACREM?

In NSW, CREST-NSW Inc. claims to be accredited by the NSW State Rescue Board (SRB) to provide "specialist communications support to the emergency services". However, the NSW State Rescue Policy clearly states that Support Units (including communications groups) do NOT need to be accredited in order to provide support to the emergency services.

For more information see our Rescue Accreditation page

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Are there other CB monitoring groups?

Yes, throughout Australia there are a number of groups providing monitoring services on the CB bands. These include ACRM, ACREM, CARES, CREST, TasVEC, and other groups and individuals. As at December 2007 it is believed that ACREM is the only national based organisation that operates in more than one state under the one management committee. It is also believed from investigations that the ACREM & ACRM combination presently have coverage in more states than any other group.

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What kind of organisation is ACREM?

ACREM is a non-profit organisation, incorporated in NSW and registered with ASIC as an Australian Registered Body. It is also endorsed as a Public Benevolent Institution by the Australian Taxation Office.

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Are donations to ACREM tax deductible?

YES! ACREM is endorsed by the Australian Taxation Office as a deductible gift recipient which means that all donations or gifts to the value of $2 or more are an allowable deduction for income tax purposes. ACREM is the only nationally registered group to hold this endorsement.

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What happens if someone is injured during an event?

ACREM Members are covered by both Public Liability and Volunteer Workers insurance cover while ever they are participating in an ACREM authorised activity - if an ACREM member (aged 85 or less) is injured during an authorised activity our Volunteer Workers insurance covers medical expenses and lost earnings due to the injury. Death cover is also provided. ACREM Executive are also covered by Association & Officials cover while performing their duties as an official.

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Does ACREM have a uniform?

ACREM has two uniforms that members may wear while performing official ACREM activities. The first is our official dress uniform and the second is our field dress uniform. As ACREM is a voluntary organisation a compulsory uniform can not be enforced, so each member is free to decide for themselves whether or not they wish to purchase a uniform. Some activities however may be restricted to members that do have at least specific items of uniform, especially where safety is a concern.

Dress uniform - White long or short sleeve shirt with epaulettes. Navy blue trousers, shorts, skirt or culottes (skirts must be knee length at least). Black belt. Navy blue or black socks. Black shoes. Navy blue jumper or navy blue or black jacket. ACREM shoulder patches on each arm with rank epaulette slides.

Field uniform - option 1 - 2 Tone hi-vis orange & navy cotton drill shirt with reflective tape (long sleeve), or 2 Tone hi-vis orange & navy cotton polo shirt with reflective tape, with "ACREM Emergency Communications" on back. Navy blue cotton work pants with reflective tape. Black belt. Navy blue socks. Black shoes (safety boots preferred depending on activity).

Alternate Field uniform - especially for dirty/dusty conditions or disasters, two-tone orange & navy overalls, with "ACREM Emergency Communications" on back and ACREM shoulder patch on each arm.

Badges - ACREM shoulder patches are not used on polo shirts. Dress uniforms include an Australian flag patch high on the left breast, with a rectangular patch depicting the state the member belongs to underneath the shoulder patch. Other badges include first aid and advanced resuscitation, other advanced qualifications and Chaplain badges, as appropriate.

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Is ACREM authorised to provide First Aid?

The following is taken from an email from a Legal Officer from the NSW Health Department:

There has been a long standing legislative requirement (contained in the Health Services Act since 2007, and before that in the Ambulance Services Act) which states (at section 67E) that:

  1. A person must not:
    1. directly or indirectly provide or take part in the provision of transport for sick or injured persons for fee or reward, or
    2. conduct for fee or reward any operations similar to the operations carried on by the Director-General under this Chapter,
    without the consent of the Director-General and except in accordance with such conditions (if any) as the Director-General may from time to time impose.

This section does not prohibit the provision of first aid. It is concerned only with transport for sick and injured persons, or services involving a transport component.

From the description of your organisation contained in your email, it appears that section 67E does not apply to ACREM and therefore ACREM does not need the consent of the Director General in order to continue to provide incidental first aid at community events.

To be certain that we were able to provide first aid services, we sent back an "FAQ" file downloaded from a NSW first aid company. In part this FAQ stated "Do first aid providers have to be licensed/approved? YES. Under NSW Health Legislation it is a requirement that any person or organisation conducting first aid for fee or reward must be authorised by the Director General of NSW Department of Health.". The response from NSW Health to this FAQ file was:

There seems to be some confusion, or perhaps misinformation, in the FAQ, in relation to what the legislation actually says.

As stated previously, the Director General's consent is required for organisations providing transport for sick and injured persons, or operations similar to those of the Ambulance Service, for fee or reward. This does not prevent or regulate the provision of first aid (as long as it is not provided in connection with transport /ambulance type services). Based on your description of ACREM, there is no requirement for your organisation to obtain consent.

HOWEVER, event organisers are warned to be certain that the first aid service engaged can legally provide the type of service they are offering. For example, use of analgesic gases at an event in NSW requires the first aiders to hold Occupational level qualifications, and a first aider may only carry Ventolin inhalers and EpiPen auto-injectors if they have been suitably trained. If the service engaged claim to be able to offer this level of service be sure you ask to see their authority/qualifications. ACREM, in partnership with Emergency Medical Services Australia Pty Ltd (EMSA), is able to provide medics endorsed by EMSA as First Responders. EMSA First Responders are able to carry and use analgesic gases such as Fentanyl, as well as Salbutamol and Atrovent for nebulisers and Adrenaline for anaphylaxis treatment. See our EMS website for more information.

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ACREM provides “security” at some events, are you licensed to do this?

At some events in NSW volunteers from ACREM provide services that some could class as security related. However, as a volunteer group staffed by only volunteers, ACREM is not subject to the requirement to hold a security licence, and neither are the volunteers providing the service.

In an email response the NSW Police Force, Security Licensing and Enforcement Directorate (SLED) said:

“The exemption previously offered to your organisation still stands as under section 4 of the Act, volunteers are excluded from requiring to hold a security licence.”

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