Feb 2014

Letter to the Editor - FIFO Policing

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Dear Editor,

It is unfathomable to consider driving yet another nail into the coffin of rural and remote communities by even considering implementing FIFO policing, especially in the very communities which governments rely on to derive much of this nation's wealth.

As seen with the mining industry the prevalence of 'fly-in, fly-out' (FIFO) staff is unequivocally destroying the social and economic fabric of regional towns where it is prevalent.

There is an inability of local councils to acquire ratepayer revenue commensurate with the actual population utilising town services and infrastructure, which already suffers from a lack of government funding attributable to Census figures that, due to FIFOs, fail to accurately reflect the true number of people utilising the services/infrastructure.

There would also be significant human costs on police who are given FIFO roles; on both the individual police officer themselves as well as the family and friends from whom they cannot help but disconnect with when working away from home for long or regular periods.

Also the effectiveness of FIFO police in regional and remote communities needs to be questioned. Effective policing takes time and trust, can a FIFO officer build these if they are not really living in the community and experiencing life as it really is in that regional or remote area?

The public money which will be spent on travel, away from home allowances and accommodating FIFO police would be better spent providing incentives for police personnel to opt to move, with their families, to regional and remote areas and become part of the community they are working for.

Incentives need to also include providing adequate health care, education and services and facilities in regional areas, affordable housing and a road system which isn’t impassable after a smell of rain.

Yours sincerely,
Hon Bob Katter MP
Federal Member for Kennedy

Contact Details

P: (07) 4061 6066
F: (07) 4061 6566
Visit: Cnr Edith and Owen St
Post: PO Box 1638
Innisfail, Qld 4860

Mount Isa
P: (07) 4743 3534
F: (07) 4743 0189
Visit: 42-44 Simpson St
Post: PO Box 2130
Mount Isa, Qld 4825

(when Parliament is sitting)
P: (02) 6277 4978
F: (02) 6277 8558

Local Call within the electorate
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Email: Bob.Katter.MP@aph.gov.au