Editorial: Concerns over loss of police

By Greg Taipari


It's concerning to think Eastern District police officers are quitting in record numbers. Especially when you consider we now only trail behind Counties Manukau and Auckland for the most resignations in the country.

Yesterday Hawke's Bay Today revealed there were 24 Eastern District constabulary resignations in the 2013/14 financial year, doubling from 12 in the previous year.

New Zealand Police Association Region 4 director, Detective Sergeant Emmet Lynch has said the region had been stable in terms of staffing but recently with the Eastern District having a "more mature group", veteran cops were leaving to take up a variety of occupations before retiring. What was concerning for me was the fact staff morale has been affected after some restructuring caused several positions to be changed or disestablished.

Mr Lynch said despite the higher turnover there were no fewer officers policing the East Coast and Hawke's Bay. This is good to hear, but it's still worrying our police have a morale issue strong enough to make some of our officers look for employment elsewhere.

Another point to raise is we are losing a number of experienced officers or that some officers will have to take on extra duties while new staff are trained. This means more pressure is added to officers who carry out such a vital job.

While I understand there has to be restructuring in any company, it concerns me an essential job like policing has to look at streamlining and the natural way of doing this is restructuring jobs.

We need to try to retain our experienced police officers because they have the knowledge to tackle and prevent crime.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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