The Courier-Mail

Cop im­port is a ‘slap in the face’

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THE re­cruit­ment of a Vic­to­rian to the up­per ech­e­lons of Queens­land’s po­lice ser­vice has prompted the po­lice union to brand it an in­sult to al­ready­de­mor­alised lo­cal can­di­dates.

Po­lice Com­mis­sioner Ian Stewart an­nounced a raft of changes yesterday, in­clud­ing the ap­point­ment of five new as­sis­tant com­mis­sion­ers and the re­as­sign­ment of three ex­ist­ing deputy com­mis­sion­ers.

But Queens­land Po­lice Union pres­i­dent Ian Leavers says the in­clu­sion of cur­rent VicPol As­sis­tant Com­mis­sioner Tracy Lin­ford is a slight to the force’s ex­ist­ing staff.

“It is a slap in the face for all ... Queens­land po­lice,” he said. “I do not be­lieve we need to im­port tal­ent.” While he stressed he had no per­sonal qualms about Ms Lin­ford, Mr Leavers said the reshuf­fle would only fur­ther de­mor­alise staff left “gob­s­macked” by the changes. “Since the Fitzger­ald in­quiry, (morale) has never been lower,” he said.

Mr Stewart in­sisted the re­struc­ture would help the force tackle press­ing is­sues such as ter­ror­ism, the so-called ice epi­demic and do­mes­tic vi­o­lence.

The Po­lice Com­mi­sioner also de­fended the re­cruit­ment of Ms Lin­ford, who has counter-ter­ror­ism ex­pe­ri­ence, through a merit-based process.

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