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Increasing connection with the community

Our state is at its strongest and safest when our police and community partners are working together.

With more police and PSOs continuing to be deployed - and thanks to the innovative Staffing Allocation Model - we are making sure police are where communities need them most.

Case Study Eyewatch - Connecting local police to local communities

Social media can be a powerful tool in connecting police to their communities.

Eyewatch Facebook pages connect police with local residents, providing information and empowering people to become part of the conversation on policing updates, community safety initiatives and crime prevention.

Currently operating in 54 regions across Victoria and with a combined following of more than 460,000, the initiative fosters a closer relationship between police and the communities they serve. Over the last 12 months, Eyewatch has gained more than 100,000 new followers.

Collectively, this has led to:

  • helping solve crimes
  • offenders being arrested
  • owners being reunited with valuable lost property
  • missing persons being found, and
  • greater public awareness on best ways to prevent crime at a local level.

More visible policing, including PSOs

What we have been doing

PSOs perform a critical role, providing a highly visible police presence that helps keep communities safe. Victorians have told us seeing PSOs on our public transport network ranked in their top three most important initiatives contributing to feeling safer.

Expanding the presence of PSOs, with the roll out of an additional 100 mobile PSOs, people are now seeing PSOs patrolling on trains, trams and at major transport hubs.

Commitment 2019-20

Expansion of PSO mobility and flexibility

The Government will work with Victoria Police to deliver new legislation that allows PSOs to be deployed more flexibly, while maintaining the current PSO presence across the public transport network.

More mobility means that PSOs will be able to provide support to the community when and where they are needed.

Modern police infrastructure

What we have been doing

The Government is committed to delivering modern and specialised police stations to protect the local communities they serve.

The Government has already invested more than $200 million to replace or refurbish 32 metropolitan and regional police stations, alongside 10 upgraded police residences.

Replacement police stations have been completed at Alexandra, Bright, Corryong, Cowes, Colac, Mallacoota, Murtoa, Warburton, Warracknabeal, Wedderburn, Wycheproof, Rutherglen and Tangambalanga. Project work to commence development is underway on replacement stations at Altona North, Reservoir, Wyndham and South Melbourne.

Refurbishments at Bacchus Marsh, Bairnsdale, Benalla, Churchill, Cobden, Geelong, Lakes Entrance, Maffra, Moe, Mt Buller, Portland, Rosebud, Sorrento, Warragul and Warrnambool have also been completed.

Police residence upgrades at Goornong, Port Fairy, St Arnaud, Underbool, Warracknabeal, Woomelang, Yackandandah and Wedderburn are all completed, with works underway at Macedon and Rokewood.

In addition, the new Melbourne East station is complete and operational, already working to keep our CBD safe.

Over the next 12 months, Victoria Police will continue to explore options to modernise police infrastructure including reforming the delivery of a number of transport and logistics functions.

Commitment 2019-20

Minimum service levels

The Staff Allocation Model (SAM) is a sophisticated and innovative way to manage police resources by identifying when and where police are most needed. To ensure the most effective model is employed, the Government will work with Victoria Police and The Police Association of Victoria to incorporate aspects of agreed minimum service levels into measures for the SAM.

These include:

  • two members for counter service at all 24hour police stations
  • response to calls for service and an appropriate 24-hour response capability
  • supporting crime prevention and local community engagement, and
  • appropriate supervision and custody management.

Easier access to non-urgent policing services

What we have been doing

The Government has invested $210 million to set up and operate Victoria’s new Police Assistance Line (PAL) and Online Reporting (OLR) so people can report a crime or suspected criminal activity in non-emergency situations, or make general enquiries.

From 1 July 2019, the PAL and OLR gives Victorians two additional channels to report non-urgent matters 24/7. The two channels can be accessed anywhere, anytime with a phone or an internet enabled device.

It will significantly improve community access to policing and also allow more time for frontline police to respond to urgent policing matters.

Anytime, anywhere access via the PAL and OLR will increase community connection, safety and confidence in Victoria Police.