‘Keeping communities safe’.
RECORD FUNDING ANNOUNCED
The funds will go towards upgrading and delivering new stations, building and training facilities, bringing in new officers and more, Deputy Premier and Police Minister Paul Toole announced.
“The NSW government is committed to providing our 22,000 sworn police officers and staff with world-class infrastructure and equipment to ensure they have all the tools they need to stay ahead of the game when it comes to tackling crime,” Toole said.
The budget includes $54.3 million for upgrades at the Goulburn Police Academy, an active armed offender training facility in Dapto, and the NSW Police Firearms registry in Tweed Heads.
Also included will be $95.9 million spent on bringing in another 550 police officers to join the force in 2022/23, as part of the government’s commitment to recruit 1,500 officers in four years.
$18.6 million over four years will go towards replacing specialised police vehicles, and another $16.6 million over five years will for new transport vehicles for people in custody.
Funds will also go to building new police stations in Byron Bay, Port Macquarie and Blayney.
NSW Police Acting Commissioner, David Hudson, said the multi-billion dollar investment would continue the ‘modernisation of the police force’.
“The funding announced today will significantly improve the capability of our general duties and specialist police officers resulting in improved community safety across the state.”
More militarisation, greater numbers, and more scope. A common theme of continuous police upgrades in recent decades since the hysteria of the 9/11 War on Terror era.
Technology will also be a heavy focus of this new era of funding, including programs with new forensics, gadgets, and technological capabilities.
THE TECH INCREASE
The most pressing increase to come out of this announcement centres around technology, for which New South Wales plans to create a program for “integrated connected” police officers.
Budget documents released Tuesday show that $96.3 million will go to this ‘connected officer program’.
Promising “fully integrated digital devices that increase connectivity between police vehicles and command posts,” and “activation of body-worn video when Glock pistols and Tasers are used,” the program means body cams will start recording automatically via a sensor connected to the weapon.
A training program for major information and communications technology infrastructure will be set up, costing $48.7 million over four years.
The NSW Police is also getting $13.8 million for a biometrics systems to help create profiles of offenders.
The program, which replaces the existing PhotoTrac system, will integrate DNA and imagery into the biometrics databases. Directly taken from the press release:
Seems like state police forces are now following their federal counterparts, with similar programs already announced by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) last year.
The budget also includes the release of $126.7 million from the $2.1 billion ‘Digital Restart Fund‘, which the government plans to invest in improving the security and accessibility of digital government services.
Digital minister Victor Dominello says more services will be available through people’s smartphones after upgrades to the Service NSW app and further government spending on digital identity.
“Simply put, (police) wouldn’t be able to do their jobs safely and efficiently without specialist equipment and technology,” Commissioner Hudson noted.
Police forces and highly controversial surveillance methods.
What could possibly go wrong?
Let’s not forget the recent track record of this organisation:
What could be coming on the horizon that requires such a boost?
Is ‘gang crime’ the reason, as they say? Or something else?
Leave your thoughts below!
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