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BASIL'S CRIME AND SAFETY PACKAGE

Residents of, and visitors to, the City of Perth are entitled to feel safe.

This is my first, and most serious, obligation as Perth’s next Lord Mayor.

Key commitments:

  1. More police – immediately begin negotiations with the State Government on increasing police presence in the City by 200 officers.
  2. Free parking for police - provide free parking and amenities for on-duty officers, to attract police into the City posting.
  3. Nyoongar outreach patrols – reinstate funding and support.
  4. Bylaws review – begging and panhandling; and where necessary implement changes to boost the power of authorities in dealing with anti-social behaviour.
  5. Extend and coordinate CCTV programs – driving innovative technology solutions.
  6. Light up the streets – improve lighting across the darkest strips.
  7. Leadership Accord – lead joint Accords and collaborative programmes in entertainment areas to lessen the demands on police.
  8. Support “eyes on the street” ranger teams.

Background:

Residents of, and visitors to, the City of Perth are entitled to feel safe.

This is my first, and most serious, obligation as Perth’s next Lord Mayor.

Ratepayers want a zero-tolerance approach to anti-social behaviour.

My leadership will drive a united approach to safety and crime. I will bring together the key decision makers – both local and state - to ensure a co-ordinated program which will enhance the safety of our city and its citizens.

This crime and safety plan is a mix of people, policy and technology.

There is an economic imperative to getting this right. Ensuring residents and visitors feel safe will increase business activity and tourism.

Policy initiatives:

1. More Police:

I will work with the State Government to deliver 200 extra officers to patrol the City of Perth.

The Northbridge (City) Police Station polices the entire City of Perth, most of the City of Vincent, and the Burswood Complex.

The current 2020 authorised strength of uniformed officers is 170 - a reduction of 44 since 2014, despite an explosion in patrons to entertainment precincts. There have been some additional clerical or civilian staff added, but no extra uniformed officers. The Police Station operates 24 hours, 365 days per year with 170. That means 57 Full time Employees per 8-hour shift. When leave, court appearances, training, and attrition are taken into account, on any given day that would equate to only 30 plus officers being available per shift for the two Cities and Burswood.

It is estimated that policing this area and guaranteeing a permanent core of highly visible uniformed police requires at least 370 permanent uniformed officers an increase of 200 on the current authorised staff.

2. Free parking for police:

Police working from Northbridge City Station will be entitled to free parking for their shifts.

Northbridge City Station is not a sought after posting, in part because of cost. For police working three shifts, using public transport is only feasible on day shift.

Parking is very expensive and currently they have an arrangement for reduced cost with the railway authority for officers to park. There are also no amenities (end of trip and change room facilities) for police in the business, CBD West and East Perth areas making it difficult to put them on foot or on the streets other than in vehicles.

3. Nyoongar Outreach Patrols:

Police say these patrols have proved very effective but are underfunded and lack co-ordination.

I pledge to expand the funding to the outreach program, which would extend patrols from Northbridge to the CBD, and help put a support network around the most vulnerable.

4. Review By-laws:

We will examine our City regulations and by-laws to give power to authorities to mitigate anti-social practices, such as begging on the streets. This will be approached in a firm and fair manner, to ensure that where necessary the vulnerable are directed toward the supportive welfare agencies.

5. Extend and coordinate CCTV programs; innovative technology solutions

I will improve and build on electronic security, physical security, rapid response to graffiti removal, repair of damage and assistance to ratepayers and residents in combating petty crime.

  • Examine a pilot scheme, using the CCTV capacity of the City to identify, track and apprehend retail thieves, and assist shopkeepers to protect their premises and recover stolen property.
  • Provide grant programs for innovative technology companies and universities that create technology programs designed to prevent or solve crime.
  • Instigate a research program that examines and identifies successful crime prevention and safety programs suitable for the City of Perth.
  • Explore technology programs that assist residents in high rise residential accommodation to prevent and combat crime.

6. Improve lighting

Crime hides in dark spaces. I will light up the streets of the city. 94% of visitors and residents to the city do the right thing.

I promise to shine a light on the 6% who are dangerous or delinquent.

7. Leadership Crime and Safety Accord:

Crime and safety is a shared responsibility.

My leadership will drive a shared vision for our precinct groups, retail and business leaders and a unified committed council.

8. “Eyes on the street” ranger teams.

I understand that our rangers have no power to police, which is why I am calling on the State Government to boost police numbers.

Our rangers, however, can complement the police by providing a roving visible uniformed presence.

These rangers are the police “eyes on the street”, alerting police to hot spots.

They will be appropriately trained, and those training programs will be informed by police advice and guidance about the sort of skills rangers require to best complement policing.

Conclusion:

In the last three weeks I’ve knocked on a thousand doors - residents and business operators, in West Perth, East Perth, the CBD, Crawley and Northbridge - and they keep telling me the same thing. Their priority is a safer City of Perth. They want a safer, cleaner, brighter Perth for families, and everyone who works, lives and visits Perth, and they want someone who can get in and get the job done. Their priority is my priority. If elected, I will make Perth a safer and friendlier city for all of us. My commitment is to work with the State Government, WA Police and all of the relevant community groups and stakeholders to make this happen – safety is a right, not a privilege. Let’s clean Perth up, reboot its heart and make our city the best it can be.

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