Labor kills committee that would explore crime crisis solutions

by | May 12, 2022 | News | 0 comments

The Labor Government has rejected a motion to establish a parliamentary committee to review the Territory’s ongoing crime crisis, and gagged debate in Parliament on the issue, leading the Opposition to call Acting Chief Minister Nicole Manison “Gunner 2.0”.

CLP leader Lia Finocchiaro said the government’s refusal to work in a bipartisan manner to find solutions for the crime plaguing the Territory and to explore issues facing police was “disgraceful” and an abandonment of every police officer in the NT.

“The Territory’s worst performing Police Minister – and aspiring Chief Minister – Nicole Manison, showed that she will be Michael Gunner 2.0 when she shamefully rejected bipartisan action and gagged debate, stopping any other member of the entire Parliament to speak,” she said.

“Every single Labor member – and the disgraced Member for Blain (Mark Turner), a former police officer – voted down proactive action on addressing crime, and support for our police.

“The CLP brought this to Parliament as a genuine attempt at bipartisan support to tackle these issues, but Labor has quit on our police, and our community.”

The committee was to examine the causes of, and solutions to, crime, examine police resourcing, look at the reason for the record high attrition rates and also explore the reasons for the police force’s current low officer morale.

Ms Manison, who is the front-runner to be elected by caucus on Friday as the new chief minister, defended the government’s handling of the crime issue, pointing to more funds committed in the recent budget for recruiting more police and for providing support services for officers.

“We will continue to invest in our police force,” she said.

“I’m proud we’re a government who is backing our police officers. We will continue to keep working hard (at tacking crime and safety) everyday. There is no silver bullet when it comes to crime.”

The union representing police backed the parliamentary crime committee.

“I don’t see any negatives to sitting down collectively and reviewing what’s going on,” said NTPA president Paul McCue on Mix 104.9 earlier.

“No one should be frightened of such a parliamentary committee forming and having a look at those particular issues. We need to look at why [police] are leaving and … we need to understand the real reasons why.”

He also said the government was not investing enough in support services for police following three officers who took their own lives over the past three months.

“If they haven’t allocated it in this budget, they need to damn well find it,” he said. “We can’t wait 18 or 24 months to find the money to increase services.”

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