Question Time: Police Numbers

Tuesday November 12, 2019

Mr BELL (Mount Gambier) (15:02): My question is to the Minister for Police. Will the minister be making a submission to the Productivity Commission highlighting that its recommendation to change fringe benefits tax arrangements will have a detrimental impact on attracting police officers to regional areas?

The Hon. C.L. WINGARD (Gibson—Minister for Police, Emergency Services and Correctional Services, Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing) (15:03): I thank the member for the question and note that since coming into government we have done a number of things to increase the number of police on the beat, and one them was to reopen and extend the police station opening hours at three metropolitan police stations. What that allowed us to do—

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order, members on my left!

The Hon. C.L. WINGARD: —if you just wait a moment—was to put administrative staff back into the operation of police stations, and that actually freed up sworn police officers to go back on the beat. A big focus of ours is making sure that we have ample police on the beat. It is a big focus of all South Australians.

I will very much take the member's point on notice, and I am very happy to discuss with him offline how we can keep growing the number of police we have on the beat in South Australia both in the regions and in the city.