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Rural NZ Virtually Unpoliced Overnight

Richard Prosser MP

Spokesperson for Police
24 JUNE 2014

Police Stretched, Rural NZ Virtually Unpoliced Overnight

Police Minister Anne Tolley must explain why rural police are left to face potentially dangerous situations alone, and at night, says New Zealand First.

“Police numbers are stretched so thin rural New Zealand is virtually unpoliced overnight – all there is is a sole off-duty officer who is required to respond to incidents that may be an hour’s drive away,” says Police spokesperson Richard Prosser.

“To have one off-duty officer on call to cover half the Waikato is beyond ridiculous, it’s insanity, and it’s going to get someone killed as a whistle-blower has pointed out,” Mr Prosser said.

“The government has made extraordinary claims about a reduction in crime to justify its massive $40 million cut to the police budget, which it has frozen for nearly six years.

“Fudging statistics and refusing to admit that people are not reporting crime because they know the police don’t have the resources to respond, is not the path of responsible Government.

“It’s a cynical manipulation of the facts in an attempt to make the books look good in election year,” he said.

“New Zealand First’s achievements include the recruitment of 1000 additional frontline police and we want to improve on this again.

“We want an end to sole-charge police stations, and to the single staffing of patrol cars at night. That means recruiting more officers, not closing stations and parking up cars.

“New Zealand should have at least the same number of police per capita as Australia,” says Mr Prosser.


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