The recent spotlight on gang and juvenile crime in Victoria means we need a proactive effort to prevent crime as well as tougher sentencing to send a clear message.
If elected at the state election later this year, a Liberal Nationals Government will work with Victoria Police to re-establish a ‘Police in Schools’ program for Victoria.
The $50 million ‘Police in Schools’ program will be a major proactive youth engagement initiative to assist police to better engage with young Victorians who are still at school and to restore respect for police and the community.
One hundred new police will be funded to work as School Resource Officers to complement the existing Victoria Police Youth Resource Officers.
Police in school officers will be able to work with other government agencies and community organisations to proactively respond to addressing particular students’ needs in a structured, holistic manner.
The former Victoria Police ‘Police Schools Involvement Program’ was axed in 2005 by then Chief Commissioner Christine Nixon despite a Department of Justice commissioned Monash University study into the program in 2004, which found it was effective and recommended that it should continue with some improvements.
Victoria is the only state in Australia that does not currently have a ‘Police in Schools’ program.
The Liberal and Nationals’ Police in Schools program is all about building respect, mutual trust and helping all our children grow into great adults.
Danny O’Brien, Gippsland South MP.