Thursday, October 04, 2007

Police(?) Reply

Comment on Mad World : Hi Marco just looking around and found your blog in relation to this matter and I'd like to clear up a few things. Firstly there are fully sworn and operational Police who are ATSI, the QPS also goes to great lengths to recruit ATSI staff; however, the issue with recruiting is a cultural one and unfortunately those that do join the QPS are often ostrisized by there families so this makes it a very difficult decision for any ATSI folk to make. Also in relation to Police Liason Officers (PLO's) these are unsworn staff that serve as a bridge between the QPS and a number of cultural groups ATI, Asian and many others. Again these guys and girls can face a difficult choice when becoming PLO's especially in places like Palm Island where there is a strong anti-police culture stemming from old issues.

In relation to "self Policing" there are a number of programs which satisfy this, including Community Police, and ATSI court, where most matters involving ATSI's are handled. Of course we need to consider that Australian Law is Australian law and while I acknowldege ATSI's as the orginal inhabitants of Australia, there must be a time where we all accept that we are now Australians and with that in mind Australian law applies to all Australians regardless of Race, religion, sex, or any other difference of the human condition.

I would also like to point out to dr.clam if he is still following this blog that the union's issue is not that an officer was charged. As Police most are happy to face there accusers in a fair system and it would be hypocritical not to. The issue stems from a couple of points. Firstly the fact that a number of enquiries (including royal commissions) have been held in relation to a number of deaths in custody and Beattie and his governement (not the Police) have failed to implement all recomendations of those enquiries. As an example the installation of CCTV at "All" watch houses, which in this matter may have been of great assistance. Further was the fact that Beattie was initially supportive of the DPP recommendation that there was insufficient evidence to support a charge and later reversed his decision for "political" reasons. I would further clarify that at no time did Hurley change his story.

If anyone does read this I hope you find it informative.

I assume this is coming from a police union member. One point is that I heard that there was CCTV cameras in that watchhouse but they were inactive, and that that is reasonably common for the ones that had been installed (yes ok, still not enough, and unclear as to whose fault it was that they were inactive). I do have this feeling that there is a way forward, and that we will find it!

Also, I fail to see why there can't be more aboriginals employed one way or another within the police system on Palm Island. Whether it be a subset of the Palm Island council being a police liaison committee, or a constant informal training of locals.


Dr. Clam said...

Perhaps I am guilty of trusting the media again. I am sure that ABC radio reported that Hurley's story changed markedly- will meander back through the online archives and check!

Marco said...

Unfortunately, the Hurley case was a "symbol" of the cause from both the QPU and the aggrieved aboriginal population. The police being placed with completely unattainable expectations, and the local aboriginal population believing that they are being a constant target from prejudiced police. Both sides believe the judicial process is rigged against their own interest, thus it ensures a rigged but ambiguous process and result (albeit there was doubt in the case anyway) as the only way for everyone to save face.

Dr. Clam said...

'Kept changing his story' = hyperbole; bad Dr Clam.

Agreed that something other than what he had maintained had happened actually happened, after the medical evidence was given = what I heard; righteously indignant Dr Clam thought this seemed pretty suss.

Marco said...

Perhaps I should add that my opinions on the matter have been greatly influenced by incidental observation of aboriginal arrests/warnings that I have personally witnessed in the Townsville area. Usually, where an intoxicated aboriginal was approached by police officers. Whenever this was by typically caucasian police, the initial aboriginal reaction is loud and confrontational. When an aboriginal Liason or security person approached, this had a tendency to completely disarm the individual. The situations get defused so quickly and quietly in comparison, that it makes me wonder why the regular police would even bother to get involved. Basically, In certain problem areas, AILO's etc. are like gold, and the excuses for not having enough are lame.