8 Mar 2016

West Coast Mayors apply pressure on policing proposal

From Nine To Noon, 9:22 am on 8 March 2016

West Coast mayors are appealing to the Police Minister to step in and stop a plan to cut community constables and youth aid workers in the area. Police are proposing a major overhaul of policing in the West Coast police area that covers over 23 thousand square kilometres. If the plan goes ahead Westport, Greymouth and Hokitika will lose both their community constables and Youth Aid police. The remote centre of Karamea at the very top of the West Coast district (popn police area 560) will also lose its only constable. It's also proposed that Ross (popn 810) will lose its constable but there will be further consultation on that. The plan is that policing will be centralised at Greymouth - there will be one youth aid officer for the area and a tactical squad focussed on drug and gang crime that will employ three officers. All up, 8 jobs are being disestablished and 8 others will be created. West Coast Mayors have sent a letter to the Minister Judith Collins calling for a halt to the plan. The Mayor of Westland is Mike Havill and the Mayor of Buller is Mayor Garry Howard