My adjournment matter is directed to the Police Minister, in the other place. The action I seek is an update on progress on the Premier’s commitment last year that a re-elected Labor Government would institute minimum service standards for Victoria Police. Including clarification of statistics on how many (and which) of the State’s police stations are manned for the full 24 hours each day. As well as what changes, if any, will occur to the number of 24-hour stations as a result of the deployment of new officers through the Government’s commitments in their Community Safety Statement. It would also be interesting to know if there is any information or explanatory material about how the assignment of those new officers is being managed. So as not to create too great or immediate an influx of inexperienced individuals in particular locations. My understanding is there are currently 397 ‘local police stations’ in the State. Of the 107 in my electorate of Northern Victoria, just 11 are manned for 24 hours a day. So, just some very rough calculations suggest that, by night-time, each station still open in Northern Victoria is – on average – responsible for the safety of over 72,000 residents. And that those 11 stations are, on average, responsible for call-out to an area of more than 9,000 square kilometres each. I am more than happy to be corrected on any of those numbers, should they be wrong. Whatever the precise figures are … in just five months since the election, I have been inundated with concerns about inadequate police resourcing in the northern half of the State. Including many crimes going unreported altogether. Especially in locations when a local police station is shut for the night and/or remains unmanned for many hours. This should hardly be surprising when one considers that it is quite obviously the case that many criminals (or would-be criminals) will be more attracted to the idea of committing their offences under the cover of darkness than during daylight hours – in areas they know are not manned. Naturally, this is also typically a more acute problem in communities where people are a long way – in a geographic sense – from the next nearest police station. I should say that I do appreciate the Minister’s ongoing work in increasing the funding to Victoria Police and its officer numbers. And, equally, I hope that she respects and understands the sincerity of the very many people – like me – who are calling for more help with the lack of 24-hour resourcing. It is an increasingly-urgent problem in many rural and regional communities specifically.

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