Queensland Police In Uphill Battle Amid Escalating Domestic Violence And Crime Offences
ABC News/Christopher Gillette
A spike in domestic violence offences, rising road fatalities and escalating levels of crime has taken its toll on Queensland police.
Commissioner Katarina Carroll told The Courier-Mail that the state's police force is exhausted and overworked after two years of Covid policing and managing day-by-day law enforcement activities.
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“It was an incredibly difficult two years, and it was exhausting,” she said.
“And I take my hat off to the police because they did an absolutely tremendous job.
“Police played such an important role … on the borders, in the hotels, meeting people at the airport, and over an extended period of time," Ms Carroll told The Courier-Mail.
Queensland has seen an increase in DV offences along with other violent crimes during the pandemic, with the latest data from the Queensland Government Statistician’s Office showing a 17.1% increase in the number of domestic violence offences reported to police, to 39,871.
Carroll said that officers responded to 380 DV occurrences a day in 2021-22, compared to around 246 in 2017-18.
The Queensland commissioner said that although police have been working on DV reforms, the progress has been delayed due to Covid.
Her comments to The Courier-Mail followed a commission of inquiry announced in May into whether cultural issues within the Queensland Police Service have jeopardised the capability of officers to respond to domestic violence.
“The QPS will fully support the Commission of Inquiry and looks forward to sharing the many initiatives being implemented by our Service, as well as the dedicated work of our police,” Carroll wrote in a social media post at the time.
“We also welcome any opportunity to improve processes and how we respond to these incidents.”
- QPS Commissioner Carroll
Last week marked the final week of public hearings for the $3.4m commission of inquiry, with harrowing evidence delivered from dozens of witnesses including police officers, lawyers and support services.
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