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State government confirms increased police staffing and permanent operation of 24-hour police station in Goondiwindi
State government confirms increased police staffing and permanent operation of 24-hour police station in Goondiwindi

State government confirms increased police staffing and permanent operation of 24-hour police station in Goondiwindi

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The Queensland Government has confirmed increased police staffing in Goondiwindi that will enable the local police station to permanently operate for 24 hours a day.

The news follows substantial advocacy from Goondiwindi Regional Council for the operation of a 24-hour police station in the town.

The state government has confirmed an additional seven permanent full-time employees (FTEs) will be based at the Goondiwindi Police Station, increasing the current number of FTEs by 50% (from 14 to 21). The new FTE roles will initially include one additional Sergeant, three Constables and three First-Year Constables.

Mayor of the Goondiwindi Region the Honourable Cr Lawrence Springborg AM has welcomed the news and said it was a much-needed resource for the busy regional town and community.

“I am delighted by this announcement,” Cr Springborg said. “I am very grateful to the Queensland Government, and to the Minister for Police and Corrective Services the Honourable Mark Ryan MP in particular, for the positive response to our community’s request for this asset and additional resources.  

“The lack of a 24-hour police station in Goondiwindi is an issue that has been raised persistently by the community for the best part of 20 years – and increasingly more so in recent times. As a town of more than 6,000 servicing twice that number of people from hundreds of kilometres on both sides of the border, this is a very much-needed development for our town from the state government,” he said.

“While it won’t address every challenge currently facing our community, it is a critical part of the solution.”

Council has unequivocally demanded a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to crime following a spate of repeat juvenile crime in Goondiwindi and has repeatedly called on the Queensland Government to introduce a permanent 24-hour police station in the town, along with tougher sentences for repeat juvenile criminals.

Cr Springborg said local police continually inform Council that the current consequences for serious breaches of bail conditions by repeat juvenile offenders in our region are just not working.

In July 2021, Council established the Border Crime Prevention Committee with representatives from the Queensland and New South Wales Police, Moree Plains Shire Council, the Goondiwindi Chamber of Commerce, the New South Wales Cross-Border Commissioner and numerous other Queensland Government departments.

The committee identified the establishment of a permanent 24-hour police station in Goondiwindi as a key priority. As a response to that continued advocacy, the Queensland Police Service has steadily increased temporary local police staff resources.

“As we have clearly witnessed over the last 24 months, when we do have increased police presence it DOES make a difference,” Cr Springborg said. “The next step we’d like to see by the Queensland Government is a review of appropriate consequences for repeat juvenile offenders.

“Breaking the cycle of crime requires appropriate resources and clarity of laws for education, child safety, policing, court and justice systems - all of which are a state responsibility,” he said. “It cannot become the norm that this behaviour is tolerated, or explained away, and more must be done to prevent crime and hold offenders accountable.

“However, this announcement should give our community confidence that the police are doing everything they can to prevent and tackle local crime.”

“Council is also grateful for the support that it has received from the Member for Southern Downs, James Lister MP.”

27th May 2022 at 12:00 AM