Working together to protect our future
 
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FAREWELL TO A BIZARRE AND CHALLENGING YEAR

As we approach the end of this year, 2020 will forever be remembered as the COVID-19 year, a year which produced one of the biggest challenges our police force has ever faced, both here in the Territory, and nationwide.

As we know, day to day policing requirements do not stop, simply because a pandemic is in play. Police, unlike many other workers, do not get the choice to work from home, or choose when they can come to work. There is no choice for them or their families, they are the 24/7 frontline response for our community. They are always there, and always will be. That is what makes us different.

The draw on resources has been insurmountable in many areas, even with the assistance of the Australian Federal Police (AFP), and the Australian Defence Force (ADF).

Cooperation between agencies is the only way the response was possible, and our Association thanks the AFP and ADF for their assistance helping our members in the Territory.

As an Association, we have continued to work with the Commissioner and his representatives in the interests of our members to ensure they have what they need to resolve outstanding issues as quickly as possible. That cooperation must continue, with a strong focus on the interests of our members welfare and that of their families.

NT BUDGET

With the handing down of the delayed 2020 Northern Territory (NT) budget on 10 November, it is no secret it shows a bleak outlook for the Territory economy, and this was going to be the case even before COVID-19.

We welcome the funding commitment to continue additional resourcing primarily due to the COVID response requirements. It was, however, disappointing to see very little funding set aside for remote infrastructure replacement, outside of previously allocated Federal funding for Ngukurr and Maningrida.

At a time when the new Police station at Nightcliff has left many scratching their heads, many of our remote officers continue to be asked to live and work in stations which are half a century old and riddled with asbestos.

2021

It is hard to imagine next year being as challenging as this last 12 months or so, however one thing we have all learned is you never know what is around the corner.

Our staff have seen a sharp increase in work given all that has gone on, and we continue to commit to a full-time staff member in Alice Springs in the coming year to assist in this increased workload, with our Southern Field Officer, Pete Stowers, signing on for another year.

I also thank our Industrial Officer, Andrea Wyllie, who after three years with the NTPA has decided to head back to Western Australia at the end of this year. On behalf our membership, thank you Andrea for your contribution in assisting the many members who required assistance during your time with us, and we wish you all the best back in WA.

To our members, your commitment this year has been second to none. With cancelled leave, roster changes, considerable time away from family, and many sections including General Duties and Crime being reduced to skeleton staff, there can be no question what you are all sacrificing for the good of the agency and our community. Anything to the contrary is nonsensical.

We look forward to continuing to work hard for you all next year. Stay safe and for those working over Christmas and New Year away from their families, thank you.