Cop numbers in spotlight

Ben Walker
The issue of staffing levels within Orana Local Area Command has again boiled over, with the union that represents officers adamant a trial agreement for minimum staffing levels will be just that.
In a release distributed on behalf of the Dubbo Branch of the Police Association of NSW (PANSW), Western organiser Rod Sheraton said staff have agreed to trial a new minimum staffing agreement but added “this is not a long-term solution to address critical shortages of general duties officers”.
The release also states that the branch has “submitted a staffing submission outlining the unequivocal need for more police to meet growing community requirements”.
“It is critical Dubbo has appropriate staffing levels to prevent crime, keep the community safe and protect officers who are on the frontline responding to calls for assistance. Currently Dubbo needs at least 30 additional police officers,” Mr Sheraton said.
“Inadequate police numbers have an impact beyond Dubbo. Shortages of general duties officers means Dubbo is often required to use staff from Narromine and Gilgandra to meet local staffing needs which leaves those communities understaffed.
“Local police are frustrated with the lack of progress in addressing the staffing shortfalls. We are calling on the NSWPF hierarchy to show leadership and stand with local police and the Dubbo community by allocating the police numbers needed.”
Acting Superintendent Scott Tanner from Orana Local Area Command said work is continuing to ensure the command has the optimum level of protection.

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