Backing our Police: 310 more officers and the latest technology

Published 5th March, 2015

The Baird Government will make our streets and communities safer by creating the strongest, most resilient and technologically-advanced Police Force in the country - including a commitment to recruit 310 additional officers.

NSW Premier Mike Baird and Minister for Police and Emergency Services Stuart Ayres said the commitment includes 250 officers to be trained as Specialist Police to investigate the most serious crimes.

The Baird Government will also invest $100 million in a landmark Policing For Tomorrow Fund – equipping NSW Police with the latest technology to keep them a step ahead of criminals.  Our support for police wellbeing will also be increased.

“The community is full of admiration for the men and women of the NSW Police Force – the government I lead will always back police, giving them the powers and resources they need to keep us safe,” Mr Baird said.

“We have taken the NSW Police Force to record strength in our first term by recruiting 679 additional officers - today we commit to a further 310 police officers.

“With this support NSW Police have made our communities safer and delivered the best crime statistics in 25 years – but we will not rest on our laurels.

“This package delivers more specialist police investigators to target the most serious offences and technology to make police work safer and quicker – meaning more time on the street combatting crime.”

The Baird Government will bolster our Police Force with 250 Specialist Police and 15 specialist civilian staff. We will:

  • Boost the Counter Terrorism and Special Tactics Command with an additional 50 detectives;
  • Build Australia’s largest Child Abuse Squad, with an additional 50 investigators and four specialist intelligence and support staff;
  • Expand the firearms and organised crime related squads by 70 police officers to target and prosecute even more criminals involved in the illegal manufacture, trafficking, importation and possession of firearms and organised crime;
  • Build on successful operations targeting gun crime and create Australia’s first Real Time Intelligence Response Centre, to target public place shootings with 20 new sworn police officer positions and five new intelligence analysts;
  • Strengthen the Cybercrime and Fraud Squad with 30 specialist police investigators and six specialist forensic accountants, intelligence analysts and technical experts, to target internet fraud, hacking, money laundering and identity theft;
  • Increase domestic and family violence police capability with 24 domestic violence specialist police officers, who will assist Domestic Violence Liaison Officers; and
  • Permanently establish the Serious Sex and Violent Offenders Investigation Unit, with 6 police to investigate and monitor serious sex and violent offenders who are on extended supervision orders after their release from jail.

The Baird Government will equip our police with the most advanced technology available by investing $100 million over four years in a Policing For Tomorrow Fund, including funding from confiscated proceeds of crime.

This fund will future-proof the NSW Police Force to ensure they have access to the latest and most innovative ways to respond to crime. The fund will allow the NSW Police Force to put in bids for priority technology. Current priorities include:

  • Body worn video cameras to be rolled out in stages to all frontline officers;
  • Tablet computers for frontline officers to enable instant access to police computer resources in the field;
  • Mobile fingerprint scanners to allow instant identification of offenders in the field, averting the need to return to the station; and
  • TruNarc testing machines to empower our Police to scan for multiple narcotics using a simple handheld machine, which will allow faster and effective results.

We will expand our support for NSW Police, including by investing a total of
$17.1 million over four years in the Police Force Wellbeing Program. Services will prevent injury, support injured offices to return to work, as well as support former officers and families.

“Today’s announcement will enable police to target all crime, from small scale right through to the most serious like organised crime, gun crime, child abuse and domestic and family violence,” Mr Ayres said.

“We have the best Police Force in the world, achieving outstanding results in driving down crime – this package delivers what they need to keep protecting the people of NSW.”

Published 5th March, 2015