The changing nature of policing
Today is the first article in what will hopefully a long partnership between the South Canterbury Police and the Timaru Herald.
When approached and asked whether we could pen something every month on behalf of those who work for in the community ensuring your safety, I readily accepted the challenge.
I thought I would start by pointing out a few changes that have occurred with our staffing resources.
Those who follow the Timaru Herald will have seen a number of new staff photos appearing from time to time.
During 2017 there will be an unprecedented number of new faces within our ranks.
This includes new Constables who have completed basic training at the Royal New Zealand Police College and also others who have decided, quite correctly, that South Canterbury is indeed the best place in New Zealand to live!
This year we have had Constable Rick Peters, Paul Verge, Will Turnbull, Sarah McLeod, James MacDonald, Richard O’Conner, Kane Whitely, Jason Ford, Todd Bates and Christie Wood start their policing careers in Timaru.
In January they will be joined by four others but more on them at a later date.
This is the largest group of new staff in a single year.
On top of those numbers, recent appointments of Constables Mathews and Aitkens ( Waimate) Aldridge ( Temuka) and Francis ( Twizel) have filled some gaps in the rural response teams.
I stress upon all of them the value of living and policing in our community.
South Canterbury is a relatively peaceful place which always supports it police officers.
They are encouraged to join sports clubs, service organisations and other community groups. Please make them welcome. Many are from other centres in the country and we want them either to stay, or if they decide in due course to move on, then take fond memories away from here.
Finally, remember that we will do everything possible to keep you all safe from harm.
However with the best will in the world we can’t be everywhere all the time, so some responsibility sits with each and everyone to take sensible precautions and safety measures themselves.
Look after yourselves and one another.
Mid-South Canterbury area commander Inspector Dave Gaskin.