Police organisational culture

The Police Minister has made the following statement in response to reports today in the New Zealand Herald.

The Deputy Commissioner, Police and Police Ministers have learned from the Commission of Inquiry into Police Conduct and from the work of Louise Nicholas.

I encourage women and men to speak up if they witness or are subjected to unacceptable conduct.

I give a commitment to Louise Nicholas that police will not “take the foot off the accelerator” in regards to ongoing efforts to improve their response to victims of offending.

I was not aware of the comments made during the Austin Inquiry but I was aware the Deputy Commissioner had spent the early part of his policing career in Rotorua and had been interviewed along with many others during Operation Austin.

The comments are deeply disappointing and are unacceptable.

DC Haumaha has learned from that and has gone on to do substantial and worthwhile work to improve the safety of women and youth.

People learn and people change. Police organisational culture and practice is now more progressive and empathetic. The drive to increase diversity in new recruits and at senior ranks is one sign of this. Police have spent ten years working to change their organisational culture and that work remains ongoing.