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This column is written by a frontline police member. It does not represent the views or policies of the Police Association.

Shock of the new

Our numbers are up. Hooray. The college is pumping out new constables thick and fast, and I understand that the leaving rate is down, so it’s all looking good on the frontline.

Plus, new cars, body armour (though the jury’s still out on usability) and computers, and more firearms, Tasers and even a helicopter.

Let’s keep that ball rolling, sir.

Twelve disciples

Looking through the allocation of new positions for the 2019-2020 year, it’s pleasing to see a good spread across the country, but let’s hope a decent percentage of them end up in those stretched PST roles.

I couldn’t help but notice that 12 new public affairs positions have been allocated for the districts. Perhaps, instead of using precious new positions for this, Police could simply have reallocated the original media liaison roles that they transferred from districts to PNHQ a few ago?

I’m pretty sure their duties included internal comms, too, and I’m certain that the media would applaud once again having a local face to liaise with.

Rough road for re-treads

In addition to all the newbies, others are even wanting back in.

It seems that, for some, the grass isn’t always greener on the outside, and they miss the thrill of the job.

I’m talking about the so-called re-treads. I’m all for this. At some stage, we’ve probably all been fed up with our work-life balance (yes, that is a thing) and dreamt of greener pastures.

For some who made the leap, it didn’t work out (but good on them for trying) and they want to come back.

Unfortunately, it may not always be smooth sailing back into the harbour. I heard of a situation where a re-hired member had to travel to Wellington all because the district commander no longer had the authority to swear them in.

After a $1000 worth of flights and a 15-minute swear-in at PNHQ, the member got home some 12 hours later.

I’m not saying we accept any Tom, Dick or Harriet back into the fold, but if they want to get back in for valid reasons and they pass the requirements, why make it such a laborious and costly process?

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