The Victorian Liberals and Nationals welcome the return of a comprehensive Police in Schools program to rebuild and strengthen the relationship between frontline police, young Victorians and the border community.
After refusing the calls of the Liberal Nationals for years to bring back this successful initiative, this is an overdue step in the right direction.
Due to the failings of the Andrews Labor Government, and the difficult position they are putting operational police into on a daily basis, community confidence in Victoria Police has reached a decade low.
Victorians feel more unsafe now compared to when the Andrews Labor Government took office in 2014. Perceptions of safety at home, in the neighbourhood and on public transport have been in decline over the last seven years, and Victorians now feel more unsafe in these settings than most other Australian states.
Shadow Minister for Police, Brad Battin said “with community confidence in police at a decade low, we need to rebuild this relationship with positive interactions.”
“Other states run successful police in school programs that reduce stigma and youth offending and unfortunately Victoria has fallen behind.”
“Education is the best way to start to rebuild respect for and improve community confidence in policing, particularly among young Victorians – so the return of the program is welcomed.”
Members of Victoria Police place themselves in harm’s way every day to keep ordinary Victorians safe and deserve the respect of the community and the support of the Government.
A Liberal Nationals Government will work with the Chief Commissioner to further respect for and improve community confidence in our policing services, and see a return to community policing through strengthened accountability measures and positive interactions with the community.