PCYC to get permanent officer

PCYC chief executive John Gillespie.
PCYC chief executive John Gillespie.

Mr Gillespie said a $250,000 strategic asset review was completed in July and the federation now knew which WA centres needed refurbishing or expanding.

It will finalise which centres will have police officers deployed full-time over the next six months.

The non-government organisation has worked with WA Police for decades to provide programs for young offenders and at-risk youth, as well as low-cost recreation.

A review by former Education Department director-general Peter Browne last year recommended changes for its 23 WA centres.

The review followed community outrage over WA Police’s 2012 withdrawal of officers from full-time PCYC managerial roles.

These involved many administrative tasks that civilians could perform and WA Police decided to change the system.

Civilians would manage the centres and youth liaison officers would rove between centres instead of one being stationed at each.

The Browne review supported this, but recommended centres in high juvenile offence-rate areas, including Gosnells, be designated ‘intervention’ centres with officers stationed there.

During its election campaign, the WA Government gave assurances it would not abandon PCYCs.

It promised $10 million in centre upgrades, $250,000 for a consultant to help the federation implement the reforms and 30 more officers to work in the 14 ‘intervention’ areas Browne named.

Six of these were metropolitan ” Gosnells, Armadale, Kensington, Midland, Fremantle and Rockingham.

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