Address to Royal New Zealand Police College Graduation

  • Judith Collins
Police

Deputy Commissioner Lyn Provost

Superintendent Mike Wilson

Greg O'Connor - Police Association <Note: if Minister wishes>

Esteemed leader Uncle Aka, greetings

Tena koutou katoa

Warmest greetings to you all.

Thank you for inviting me to speak here today.

This is the first time I have had the pleasure of attending a Police graduation.

The pride shown by family, friends and the graduates themselves has already left a strong impression on me.

I would like to congratulate all graduates for their hard work and perseverance over what I am sure has been a demanding 19 weeks.

You should all be proud that you are now part of an elite organisation.

The New Zealand Police are renowned around the world for their integrity, their professionalism and their commitment to making communities safer.

It is vital to the smooth functioning of society that the public has faith in the Police. It is vital that the Police are respected and trusted.

It is up to each and every one of you to maintain that trust.

As a Police officer you carry a lot of responsibility on your shoulders.

I will be relying on you to exercise that responsibility wisely.

In the course of your duties, you may find yourself confronting danger, or situations that you will find shocking.

Even under the most demanding conditions, you will be expected to show humanity, firmness, compassion, common sense and, above all, respect for the rule of law.

I expect nothing less. The public of New Zealand expects nothing less.

Every day you will go to work with the knowledge that you are making New Zealand a better and safer place.

As your Minister, my priorities are that you have the tools and the support to achieve that goal.

It's also important to me that you are as safe as possible while serving your fellow New Zealanders.

This government believes the police are being stretched too thin.

We'll increase the number of sworn Police by recruiting 224 new police officers on top of the present recruitment plan. That will mean 600 new officers by the end of 2011.

We will also put them where they're needed - on the streets and in the neighbourhoods where crime happens.

Policing is not an easy job. Your friends and families have a vital role to play here.

They have supported you as you move along this path from the very outset: from making the decision to apply, to the selection process, to the challenge of meeting the rigorous standards required by this college.

I would like to acknowledge them for that important contribution.

I am intensely pleased to hold the Police portfolio. I share in the pride of everyone here today, and wish you well as you embark on your new career.

Now it's time for me to hand over to Wing 254's Patron, Martin Sneddon.

Like us, Martin is also in for an exciting couple of years, as we draw ever-closer to the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

As Chief Executive Officer of Rugby New Zealand 2011 Ltd, planning and delivering this huge event is really his baby.

I'm sure the job has plenty of excitement - Martin is not long back from announcing the World Cup draw in London - but also some fairly serious challenges. For example, the requirement to sell 1.5 million tickets.

Martin, of course, crossed into rugby after a successful career in cricket. He played for New Zealand during that 1980s golden age which is remembered with nostalgic longing by the older fans of today.

Throughout that time, and up until 2001, Martin worked as a lawyer at his family's Auckland law firm, Sneddon & Associates. He then became Chief Executive Officer of New Zealand Cricket at what turned out to be a very turbulent time, as issues of international politics and security dogged the team's activities.

The challenges of that role, and certainly of his current role, will have given Martin some fascinating insights. It is my pleasure to hand over to Wing 254 Patron, Martin Sneddon.

Conclusion

Tena koutou katoa.