Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 11 Hansard (22 October) . . Page.. 3942 ..
MS TUCKER (continuing):
complaints. I am on the record in many areas with a concern that complaints be taken seriously and used to build better services, a better organisation, a better policy response or whatever. I am also concerned that those complaints are responded to in a way that addresses the hurt or other injury of the complainant. But I would not be happy to support the first three parts of the motion as they stand.
It is, as I said, a concern that there are imbalances in experience versus inexperienced officers. I've heard Mr Wood's response to this, which is basically that there have been some changes. But it is a bit concerning. Mr Wood's amendment is rather annoyingly self-congratulatory on the first point, but I really can't argue with the rest of the amendment. I will support it.
I hope that Mr Wood is right, that ACT Policing is one of this country's most effective police forces, well led and trained. I don't know that for sure, but I'm sure Mr Wood can give us a bit more info on that. So I will be supporting the amendment from Mr Wood.
MR STEFANIAK (4.18): Firstly, I will just go through what some of the other speakers have said and then just briefly come to Mr Pratt's motion, Mr Wood's amendment and my amendment to Mr Wood's amendment.
I am amazed. Ms Tucker actually made a couple of valid points here. I did hear her, I think, say older people want more police in the neighbourhood and that also helps early intervention. Yes, it does. That is, I think, a very real reason why we do need to see in the community a more visible police presence, and that is, I think, why things like the mounted patrol and the bicycle squads were so terribly effective when they operated. More of that later.
Whilst it is nice to hear Mr Hargreaves praising the police in Tuggeranong, he made some amazing statements. Primary schools with attack rabbits. What a lot of nonsense. He shows his complete ignorance of what policing in schools was all about. There was a very effective program a number of years ago where actually police were effectively stationed for a couple of days a week, I think in Campbell High School and Campbell Primary School.
The relevant police officer who did that had a wonderful rapport with the students, and it had a very significant impact in terms of things like early intervention and actually getting out there and working out what was happening in the community. It was part of, I think, the community policing or country cop idea which Dave Rugendyke did so well in Kaleen and the other police officer did so well in the suburbs of Ainslie and Campbell.
That is one of the main points not only in Mr Pratt's motion but also in the policy in relation to community policing launched by him on behalf of the Liberal Party yesterday. So it is just ridiculous for Mr Hargreaves to make idiotic statements about primary schools with attack rabbits. He just doesn't understand.
He talked about an increase in burglaries, as I think did somebody else. It might have been Ms Dundas. They asked, "How can you say there's a crime rise?"I think Mr Pratt made that quite clear. Operations like Halite, which did a very good job of reducing crime, help reduce crime. As, indeed, any police officer will tell you, so too does section