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DATE: September 7, 2018

The State Government’s 24/7 front counter policy at a number of major police stations is putting lives at risk according to the WA Police Union.

WAPU President George Tilbury said an incident in Perth’s south east recently highlighted how ridiculous the front counter policy was.

“A teenage girl nearly died because two police officers were effectively chained to the front counter of the police station, just on the off chance someone might come in,” Mr Tilbury said.

“What made this worse was a car from Belmont had to travel more than 60 kms to assist the girl because all cars aligned to the Armadale District were tied up with other jobs.”

Mr Tilbury said police officers at a number of the newer 24/7 stations have told the Union that no members of the public attend the front counter after hours.

“The Government’s policy is a waste of precious resources and it nearly had blood on its hands,” Mr Tilbury said.

“Our Members need the flexibility to be able to leave the station to go and render assistance if the need arises. Police are autonomous and they are entrusted by the Commissioner to make split second, lifesaving decisions. This policy, thought up by politicians not police officers, is taking important decisions away from the frontline.

“The State Government needs to instruct WA Police it no longer needs to keep front counters open 24/7 and allow those police officers to get out on the road to assist their fellow workers and the community.

“Alternatively, they could employ an additional 500 police officers and everyone would be better off.”