Labor breaks police recruitment promise again

The Weatherill Labor Government has once again broken its promise to recruit 313 sworn police officers.

Last Thursday’s State Budget revealed that the Weatherill Labor Government promise to recruit additional officers has now been pushed back from 2018 to 2020.

Labor’s original promise, made prior to the 2010 election, was for ‘300 more police on our streets over the next four years.’ 13 transit police were subsequently included, bringing the total to 313.

The original deadline for recruiting 313 additional sworn police officers was first extended to 2016 before it was pushed out to 2018 and now 2020.

Minister Piccolo later announced that cadets would be included in counting – despite previously saying that “the understanding is that it is 313 additional sworn officers, not cadets or community constables”.

“The Weatherill Government has failed dismally to put the police on the streets that it promised,” said Shadow Minister for Police Dan van Holst Pellekaan.

“I’m extremely concerned that community safety will be undermined by these Weatherill Government budget cuts.

“It is unbelievable that this promise would be pushed back at a time when Labor is also closing police stations and severely downgrading the operating hours of others.

“Many of the police stations that are being downgraded are in prime entertainment precincts, including Norwood, Henley Beach and Glenelg.

“Coupled with station closures and downgrades, pushing back the recruitment of 313 police officers until 2020 is putting the South Australian community at risk.”