A change.org petition to ‘Keep Mudgee Safe’ has garnered 23 supporters in less than 24 hours.
Deborah Patison created the online petition stating ‘we want to keep Mudgee and the other Local Regional Area Commands in NSW safe’, once 100 supporters has been reached the petition will be delivered to Police Minister Troy Grant.
It was revealed this week that the NSW Police Force will be ‘re-engineered’, but Mr Grant refused to explain what the changes will mean for the LAC’s.
It’s believed the amalgamations will directly affect the Mudgee LAC, which would be absorbed into the Orana LAC based in Dubbo.
The petition stats, “We must not sit back and take the proposed amalgamations of the Police Regional Local Area Commands lightly”.
“In short if these changes go ahead our communities could face a rise in crime, they will definitely face a decrease in jobs and income spent among the community and they will also definitely face a decrease in the effective policing that currently goes on in our community.
“Our whole community should let the Government and the NSW Police Force that they are not happy about it, starting with Troy Grant, the Police Minister.
“I don’t see how the uncertainty created over staffing is any help to the community,” Mr Donato said.
A NSW Police spokesperson told the Mudgee Guardian this week, ‘nothing has been finalised’.
“We are looking at where consolidations and realignment across the organisation can create greater efficiencies. Some areas will see a redistribution and streamlining of ranks which will see less management positions and more police on the frontline.”
The online petition outlines concerns for, “significant job loss for both active Police and supporting staff at the local station”.
“It will mean that the police in leadership positions who ensure our Police are supported and driven to achieve the very best for our region will be reduced to a minimal number.
“Police have a hard and demanding role to play in our community and support from well trained, experienced Police superiors is vital in maintaining morale and work satisfaction.
In a statement this week, Mr Grant rejected claims police numbers would be cut, “I’ve made it very clear there will be no reduction in frontline policing.”
“it is entirely false to suggest that police services will be diminished in any way as a result of the re-engineering.”
But there are fears the amalgamations will mean the Mudgee LAC would be reduced from 24 hours to 12 hours, which Deborah Patison describes as, “ludicrous in such a thriving and tourism encouraging region. Both locals and tourists want to feel safe”, in the petition.
“Forced amalgamations for councils hasn't worked, so why would it now work for Police.
“Without the local station support staff (non police), there will also be the additional work load on our local active Police, to manage more of their own administration and paperwork, this they will spend less time on the road preventing and investigating crime.
The online petition finishes with, “This is unacceptable. Please sign and make sure that our Mudgee is safe for everyone”.
The change.com petition is available HERE.