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Seales sees problems with hiring more cops
The recruitment of 1,000 police officers and 5,000 special reserve policemen may not have been properly thought out and could result in further problems in the service. So said secretary of the Police Social and Welfare Association, acting Inspector Michael Seales, in an interview yesterday after Finance Minister Larry Howai’s 2013-2014 budget presentation. Howai said additional officers would be recruited and there would be increased joint police/army patrols, unmanned aerial vehicles and the establishment of a National Security Training Agency, among other measures. Seales, who said the association would speak further on the budget at a later date, focused on the recruitment of additional officers.
He added: “The association has concerns as to the use of its human capital and knows fully well that the addition of 1,000 police officers and a further 5,000 Special Reserve Police officers could be problematic. “It is of the firm view that not much thought was put into this recruitment process.” Seales said the Police Service suffered mostly from management issues of deployment of officers. “The association holds the view that there are enough police officers and Special Reserve Police officers to do the job. It is simply an issue of management,” he added. He said the association was not satisfied there was a demonstration of a comprehensive crime plan to match the recruitment proposed in the budget or scientific analysis to support such a drive.
Seales said if there was no analysis to support the recruitment proposal, it could result in an abuse of state funds. “It is the whole question of putting the cart before the horse,” he added.
He said it was ill-fated that there had been no discussion with the association. “Right now there is a bottleneck in terms of promotions within the Police Service. “You want to bring a significant amount of officers but who is there to manage them? There will not be enough people in the Police Service to successfully manage these new recruits,” he added.
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