The NSW State Government was today blasted by the Member for Wallsend, Ms Sonia Hornery MP, for its failure to address the shortage of Police numbers in the Lake Macquarie/Hunter Police Districts.
Ms Hornery has called on the Police Minister to review the way allocations of new Police recruits are made after it was revealed that this region would only receive 2 of the 246 recruits who graduated last Friday from the Goulburn Police Academy.
Ms Hornery said the latest Police graduates will see only one new recruit for Port Stephens Hunter and one for Lake Macquarie Police Districts, less than 1 percent of the total of new recruits.
“Of the 246 new officers who will join the New South Wales Police Force today, a staggering 85 percent of recruits will be stationed in Sydney, with the rest of the State sharing the remaining 15 percent.
“The Northern Region received a total of 6 new officers to cover the area from the Hawkesbury to the Queensland border,” said the disgruntled MP.
Ms Hornery has been pressing for some time to increase numbers in an area that has more than its share of crime.
“Less than 2 weeks ago in Parliament I debated a Notice of Motion calling on the Government to look at more Police allocations to the Wallsend electorate.
“We have seen why the Government voted against my Motion, they knew that the latest allocation would short change the Hunter again.
“Only 2 new recruits for the whole of the Hunter shows that this Government continues to ignore our cries for more resources.
“We have crime stats in our areas that are more than double or triple the State average, yet we get less than 1 percent of the new recruits.
“If this is considered a fair distribution of new recruits then we need to look at the way the new officers are allocated.
“When I talk to local Police it is obvious they are understaffed and in desperate need of more feet on the ground,” said Ms Hornery.
“More Police on the beat are needed. We deserve our fair share.”