Guest Post: Putting a Human Face on our Scary Police Force

A guest post by Sparticus Oblivious:

There are 327 police stations in NZ

Drive past 90% of them and you feel like you are living in soviet Russia, High mesh fences, Locked Gates, half a dozen police cars, and an old house resolutely shut.

Try ringing the local police station

You cant, you just bloody cant

You are told to ring somewhere else if it’s important

You are given an array of options, hanging yourself being the last one

You will be invited to partake in a survey

Your call will probably be diverted to the 105 call centre

They don’t actually say that your call is important to them, so its nice to know they are not yet that cynical, but they may as well tell you to fuck off.

You will be told there may be a considerable delay but if you are persistent, and have enough years still left to live, you will be put through to someone based god-knows where who will be really helpful, but who thinks Oratia is somewhere near Taupo.

All of the little police stations have their own web page, they generally say they are open 8.00am to 4.00pm. They have individual phone number that are listed as a cruel joke 

But there is a solution

Man the Stations

I know I know, radical, get out of here you subversive jerk.

By “man the stations” I mean have an open door through which any one can walk, and there will be a warm body there that will talk back to you when you talk to them, and if you ring the actual individual number for the actual individual police station you will get an actual person residing at the actual police station.

Imagine how much safer you would feel if you knew that that Colditz police station down the road was always manned by a friendly officer.

You could march your intransigent little 8 year old snot down to the cop shop for a stern telling off.

You could call in while walking your dog to say there was s suspicious looking car cruising around the neighbourhood.

It would be a safe haven for anyone being hassled for whatever reason.

It would cost say $20 million to upgrade the Stations, and maybe $60 million a year to man them from say 10am to 6pm each day. I would suggest 2 people be at each station, one Uniformed officer and one civilian. I am sure there would be many trainable semi-retired people who know the area and would be keen to help.

It would be the modern equivalent of bobbies on the street and the community engagement engendered would make us all feel safer.

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