THE biggest shake-up of WA policing in 20 years will help to significantly reduce crime in the Perth metropolitan area, according to acting police Commissioner Stephen Brown.
His comments were made at a law and order forum on the new 2020 police operating model at Perth Soccer Cub last week.
Acting Commissioner Brown said the new model, which takes effect next month, would help target the Perth CBD and surrounding areas, where the majority of crime and disorder occurred in WA.
‘Of the 550 extra police officers promised by the government, 146 of them will be operating in the Perth metropolitan area by December 17,’ he said.
‘There will be two large response teams; one based in Perth with 86 police officers and one based in Midland with 86 police officers.
‘They are the response teams; when you call for urgent matters, those officers will go to the immediate problems.
‘For the serious matters, there will be two large detective teams, one based in Perth, one based in Midland.’
The new policing model will have Perth, Midland, Mirrabooka and Joondalup merge to create the Perth Police sub-district.
The merger aims to make services more efficient, build a personal connection with the community and push police out to the front line.
Acting Police Minister John Day said the restructure would also help police focus more of their time on ongoing local issues.
‘It is important everywhere of course but particularly in Perth as the capital and where various issues do exist,’ Mr Day said.
‘Liquor licensing and alcohol consumption are among the biggest challenges in such a heavily populated and active area.
‘Alcohol and drug-fuelled anti-social behaviour do account for much of the response for police services in theses areas.
‘Perth can also be a magnet for troubled and young people, and there is a big effort put in by the government and police to ensure resources are provided to help them as required.
‘There’s also transport issues for people leaving the entertainment districts.’
The new policing model has been trialled in the South East Metropolitan District, resulting in a significant reduction in crime.