20th May 2016
To address the major social issues of today we need to relate to youth for tomorrow.
The Blue Print
– Creating an environment for more effective Policing.
This Blue Print has been prepared by a number of retired executive police to provide a frame work for a new paradigm in Policing, as it relates to youth. The basic premise is to move from dealing with the consequences of crime to reducing offending before it occurs roblux decals kafkacotton, rather than the current emphasis of trying to divert offenders once they have offended. The Blue Print is contemporaneous with the Victoria Police Mission Statement.
There will always be a valid argument for the need to reduce recidivism and that need will always exist but the current good work done by many is poorly coordinated leading to ineffectiveness. VicPol needs to provide leadership to coordinate and better target the efforts to reduce recidivism and offending in the first place.
The community needs VicPol to acknowledge its triage role.
The shifting of the primary focus to prevention of youth crime rather than managing the developed problem is logical but this does not mean the discontinuation of work with young offenders.
This shift in focus will make working with recidivists and their families more effective as that work would build on earlier contact with the family and the offender in the early intervention programs.
An educated community that has identifiable and direct contact with a police member can lead to early and appropriate intervention. It then follows that police can identify the greatest harms. Police in Schools Officers (PIS) are more likely to find out about the harms through the school network rather than from the victims who may be reluctant to involve police for a variety of reasons. Domestic Violence, drug issues and Terrorism are but three examples.
To introduce a Police In Schools Program for Victoria, secure the future of the traditional Blue Light Project, coordinate formal and informal Police Youth activities and develop new initiatives in Police Youth relations.
Augment the impact on police resources by recruiting part time retired police volunteers and seek additional funding, external to Police budgets.
The proposal is focused on developing a partnership where the operations of a Board of Governors and Victoria Police dovetail to the mutual benefit of Youth.
It seems illogical to start from ground zero when we already have a Youth orientated organisation in Blue Light.
A Board of Governors to manage the affairs of Blue Light Victoria would develop a similar relationship to VicPol as Blue Ribbon but in another sphere.
It is recommended that the Chair of a Blue Light Board of Governors should be appointed by the Chief Commissioner (CCP) and Governors appointed by the Chair in consultation with the CCP.
The CCP should encourage someone with a strong police leadership background who has an understanding and passion for the task and is respected both within and external to VicPol. This will set the standard for the future. Retired Chief Commissioner Kel Glare would fit this criteria and would be a very appropriate appointment..
The Board will be charged with achieving additional funding external to Police Budgets to promote and finance initiatives that may not be possible in the current environment. The detail of this relationship will be developed with the Chief Commissioner’s nominee and the Board
The Attractions of using Blue Light Vic Inc.
- Blue Light has Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status and it is a registered Not for Profit Organization (NFP).
- Blue Light has also a well sourced insurance policy in place that can be easily adapted to the broader project.
- Blue Light has already an established network that can build/integrate on the VicPol Youth Resource Officer network.
- Being a not for profit organization Blue Light can (and already does) attract Corporate, Philanthropic and Government grants to finance projects moving reliance away from VicPol budgets.
- Blue Light’s most valuable asset is its brand and that saves having to develop one from scratch – Critical to attracting community acceptance and corporate and philanthropic support.
Developing the Police (Retired) in Schools Program
Our objective will be to recruit sufficient numbers of suitable retired members to deliver the Primary Schools aspect of the project. Most of the support for these members will rely on electronic communication. This will ensure integration, coordination and supervision. Youth Resource Officers (YRO) would need to be involved at Secondary School level so there is continuity of purpose.
To attract retired members we need to address their needs to encourage them to commit. We need also to consider legitimacy of individuals delivering the package in the eyes of the community, the youth and the operational members.
We will ask for their time and in return offer respect and cover their costs.
It can be suggested that a flaw in the manner in which youth services are currently delivered is the lack of coordination. An effective Blue Light Board could provide the leadership to achieve a better outcome and better use of resources.
Everybody agrees there should be coordination but it just isn’t happening, what is needed is somebody smart enough or brave enough to stand up and provide leadership. A Blue Light Board of Governors could provide that Leadership particularly with a Chair the calibre of Mr Glare supported by the CCP.
To be effective we need to stop pandering to the sensitivities of organizations quarantining their function from each other. There is certainly lots of talk but no outcomes.
Legal Liabilities Corporate Risk
Currently any Police youth (or Community) activities are authorised at a local level but it seems Sovereign or Corporate risk factors do not play a part in the assessment. Additionally projects are undertaken by police members without corporate authority because they were doing them in their own time.
A child (or adult) injured during any Police oversighted activity (on duty or voluntary – authorised or not) poses corporate risk to VicPol and a Sovereign risk to the State.
An effective Board of Governors would address this issue and implement procedures to minimise the risk.
With a strong will for change, this initiative would only be the first step in creating a meaningful and effective Youth strategy.
A long term vision applied to this model would see that generally the issue of Youth in Policing substantially funded and resourced outside the traditional Police Budget.
That is not to say that this program will have no impact on Police resources particularly during the start-up phase.
There are some similar aspects to the New Zealand Model of Blue Light in this structure however it takes their model to a new level.
The attraction to VicPol has many facets. The structure recommended makes provision for VicPol (CCP) to influence the function of the Board and should there be a problem then it won’t be VicPol, it will be the Blue Light Board.
Kelvin Glare Chief Commissioner of Victoria Police Retired
Bill Horman Commissioner of Tasmania Police Retired
Deputy Commissioner Victoria Police Retired
Noel Newnham Commissioner of Queensland Police Retired
Deputy Commissioner Victoria Police Retired
Ron Anstee Assistant Commissioner Victoria Police Retired
Ivan Ray Inspector Victoria Police founder Blue Light Retired