WA police to increase industrial action

PERTH, Aug 15 AAP - The WA Police Union has instructed members to escalate industrial action by not seeking police costs in court and closing stations if only one officer is present.
The union said in a statement on Tuesday it had told prosecutors in magistrates courts to not seek costs associated with arrests and summonses, which it said would cost the government up to $100,000 a day.
Handing out fewer traffic infringements over the past month had already amounted to more than $230,000 a day in lost revenue, according to union president George Tilbury.
The WA Labor government says it can only afford a flat $1000 wage increase for public servants over the course of a year due to the state's budget woes.
The union was responding to the McGowan government's inaction over pay, conditions and additional police officers, it said in a statement.
Police officers would also be instructed to close police station doors if two police officers were not available to attend front counter duties at night.
If a member of the public attends a police station during these times and requires immediate assistance for a life threatening matter, backup will be requested from the nearest car to protect officers but community safety would not be compromised, Mr Tilbury said.
There had been major incidents at Perth police stations this year, including an officer being stabbed at Gosnells and drive-by shootings outside Armadale and Rockingham.
That action would target Labor's election promise to extend the opening hours of certain police stations, without fully resourcing them, he said.
"The cost of sorting this out would have been significantly less than the financial loss it has suffered to date, which will only get worse," Mr Tilbury said.

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