CONSTITUENCY QUESTION & RESPONSE | WESTERN METROPOLITAN REGION
Mr Melhem: My constituency question is to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services, the Honourable Lisa Neville, in the other place. I welcome the recent announcement that a further 709 officers are set to begin work over the next year. This includes an extra 207 family violence officers, a testament to the Andrews Labor government’s commitment to real action on family violence. In addition, this increase includes an extra 105 police allocated to the frontline to support parental leave, ensuring our hardworking police get that important time with their newborns. The west is home to some of the fastest growing suburbs in Victoria. With this immense growth comes an increased need for strong representation from Victoria Police. My question for the minister is: how many new police will be deployed by the Andrews Labor government in municipalities in my electorate of Western Metropolitan Region as part of this rollout?
Ms Neville: As you are aware, this Victorian Government has invested a record $2 billion in Victoria Police to provide them with the resources, personnel, infrastructure, laws, equipment, and technology to keep Victorians safe. This includes deploying an additional 3,135 police officers, on top of attrition, by 2022. The Staffing Allocation Model (SAM) developed by Victoria Police, in consultation with the Police Association of Victoria, determines the location and deployment of police officers to areas of highest need. This approach is endorsed by the government to safeguard the operational independence of Victoria Police and to ensure resourcing is determined by policing expertise and evidence, rather than politics. Constituents in your Western Metropolitan Region are covered by three policing divisions within the North West Metro Region—Westgate Division, Brimbank Division, and Fawkner Division. As of 31 March 2019, these three divisions have had 308 full-time equivalent police officers deployed since November 2014. From May 2019 through to April 2020, 709 newly trained and recruited police officers will be deployed across the state. Under SAM, the Western Metropolitan Region will receive an additional 75 general frontline and specialist officers by April 2020. This government continues to focus on family violence, through the deployment of 26 family violence specialist officers already deployed within the Western Metropolitan Region, with the upcoming allocation providing an additional 37 family violence specialist officers to service your constituents.