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Minister should come clean on 111 calls

Minister should come clean on 111 calls

The Police Minister should come clean on his department’s failure meet its own guidelines on answering 111 calls, says National MP Brian Connell.

The Minister told Parliament on June 23 this year that the police’s Southern Communications Centre, which covers the South Island and Stewart Island, was meeting its targets for answering 111 calls.

Today, Mr Connell highlighted a memo from the unit’s manager, dated 15 June, which shows police were not being dispatched to serious priority one calls in the required time.

Police require 90% of calls to be dispatched within two minutes of being received, but in one recent week only 73% of calls to Southern Communications met that target.

Mr Connell says this is key information that the Minister should be acting on. “By disregarding information from his own staff he is ignoring a situation which could put people’s lives at risk.

“This is not some abstract issue. If police are not responding to 111 calls quickly enough then sooner or later someone will pay for it with their life,” says Mr Connell.

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