Time For Police Minister To Deliver, Says Dunne
The blowout in police funding in Dunedin, Wellington and North Shore-Waitakere is the surest sign yet that their ability to maintain day-to-day police services is under threat, says Hon Peter Dunne, leader, United New Zealand.
"It is time for the Minister of Police to show some leadership and deliver the resources his forces need.
"It is the Minister's responsibility to ensure the police have suitable resources to prevent and investigate crime and maintain public safety," says Mr Dunne.
He says the statement of Dunedin area police manager Inspector Dave Campbell that it was becoming "more difficult" to determine how to make savings without affecting day-to-day policing, is a sad indictment on the state of the police. "Everyone suffers when police can not fulfil their core duties, which inevitably leads to poor morale and legitimate public fears about safety, not to mention the signal it sends to criminals.
"Already in some regions DNA sampling has been cut back or suspended. This is bound to obstruct crime solving and prevention. As police themselves say, some of the most serious, heinous crimes, like rape, rely on a comprehensive DNA database to ensure offenders can be efficiently identified.
"While the funding impasse may not be easy to sort out, the reality is that it must be sorted and we desperately need the Minister to show a positive lead in advancing this issue," concludes Mr Dunne.