The imminent closure of the Crime Stoppers call centre is a massive blow for Queensland’s over-stretched police officers, LNP Leader Deb Frecklington said today.
Police Minister Mark Ryan has refused to cover the centre’s $250,000 funding shortfall and said tip-offs from the public will now be directed straight to the police.
“At the last election the LNP promised an extra $1 million for Crime Stoppers because we know how important its work is in fighting crime,” Ms Frecklington said.
“Labor’s refusal to help will pile more pressure on police who are already struggling to cope with a rise in assaults, break-ins and car thefts.
“Many callers to Crime Stoppers only give information because they can do so anonymously.
“They call Crime Stoppers because they don’t want to call the police and provide their details.
“Labor must act immediately to save this service and keep crime-fighting information flowing to our police officers.”
Shadow Police Minister Trevor Watts said Police Minister Mark Ryan’s insistence that police could cope with the closure of the call centre lacked credibility.
“According to Mark Ryan, the Police Commissioner says QPS can cope with the extra calls,” Mr Watts said.
“He needs to stop hiding behind the Police Commissioner and take responsibility for fighting crime in Queensland. That’s what he’s paid to do.
“The Queensland Police Union says staffing levels are critically low and at least 100 extra officers are needed in every police district.
“This news is also a savage blow to Crime Stoppers’ 20 paid call-centre staff and its selfless team of 45 volunteers.”
“Our police should be on the beat preventing and detecting crime, not taking calls to Crime Stoppers.