Yesterday we reported that Telstra were waiving any mobile bills that volunteer firefighters incur while fighting the worst fires in the nation’s history. Not to be outdone by Telstra, Optus have joined the party, and are now offering the same.

For the months of December and January (let’s hope a vast majority of them have been extinguished by then) Optus will cover the costs of volunteer firefighters’ mobile services in appreciation for their efforts to protect our communities:

When our communities are facing such difficult circumstances, we all seek to provide whatever support we can for our volunteer firefighters who are placing themselves in harm’s way to protect the lives and property of Australians.

Waiving the bills of volunteer firefighters is our small way of saying thanks.Kelly Bayer-Rosmarin, Optus Deputy CEO

As Phil wrote yesterday, the effects of being a volunteer firefighter on their everyday lives can be seemingly insurmountable. Loss of income and possibly loss of jobs can put a very real strain on their families and no matter what Scomo says, they should be not just recognised for their efforts but given a helping hand so they can – and want to – keep doing what they are doing.

Optus recognises many of our customers are facing hardship, which is why we have in place an assistance policy with a range of support for customers affected by the bushfires.

Optus has also established a hotline for volunteer firefighters and those affected by the bushfires: 1300 301 671.

Hopefully this little bit can help the firefighters at least have one stress out of their mind — I dare say it must be extremely stressful, not just fighting fires but worrying about family at home as well.