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July 14th, 2018 by admin

Back to the future – police to learn lessons of the past

Police are investigating after a man has been found with gunshot wounds to the leg in Carrum Downs. Photo: Paul RovereIn many ways the Police Capability Plan designed to provide a ten-year strategy for Victoria Police is a back-to-the-future document.
Nanjing Night Net

While it is full of modern management-speak and catchy expressions, it is designed to take police back to Sir Robert Peel’s basic model of visible police presence, quick service, community engagement and crime prevention.

Two years ago the force delivered its Victoria Police Blue Paper outlining what it should look like in 2025. The Capability Plan is a “road map” designed to get them there.

But there is a difference: the Blue Paper said more police was not the answer. The new plan acknowledges that threats of terrorism and escalating crime rates require a visible and immediate response.

Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton wants more flexible rosters with more police working at night (and out patrolling the streets). At present rostering reflects a Melbourne that no longer exists; a city that largely closes down at midnight.

Changes in police response to mental health and family violence have made attending so-called routine calls more labour intensive.  This often results in calls for assistance backing up, leaving people waiting hours for police to attend.

While it is true that law enforcement is harder, the fact there are more people working at Crown Casino in the early hours than there are police patrolling the streets is indefensible.

The Capability Plan calls for police to work with individuals and companies on improving security in a process known as “target hardening”. Thirty years ago a bank was robbed virtually every working day but security improvements mean that particular crime is now virtually off the books. So target hardening may be a cliche, but it works.

We are now the stolen-car capital of the country and closing the cash-for-scrap loophole in car wrecking businesses will go a long way to stemming the tide.

Police know they are not the single answer to spiralling crime. The strategy talks of partnerships with community groups, early intervention with young people heading down the wrong path and a more flexible response so police can blitz crime spots before they become no-go zones.

Decades ago the then Chief Commissioner Mick Miller was briefed on a US police model that had taskforces, helicopters and all the (police) bells and whistles. His question of where were the police on the beat was met with blank stares.

For the truth is that in the big picture, cops on the street are worth more than a 1000 words.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.