Minister Nash's Speech to Woolf Fisher Fellowship Breakfast

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa

Commissioner Mike Bush, Sir Noel Robinson - Chairman of the Woolf Fisher Trust and patron of Wing 314, Rebecca Robinson and Michael Fisher – from the wider Woolf Fisher Family, University of Waikato Professor Neil Quigley, Chief Executive of ESR Dr Keith McLea, members of the Police executive, Woolf Fisher fellows, ladies and gentlemen.

Thank you DCE Evans for that introduction and thank you for inviting me to this breakfast today.

I know the commitment, dedication, and often self-sacrifice that police officers and members of the wider organisation bring to serving our communities, and I fully support initiatives that recognise the huge contribution they make.

The Woolf Fisher Fellowship is one of those initiatives and I thank Sir Noel and the Fisher Family Foundation for making this fellowship possible.

It allows the unsung heroes within Police to be rewarded for the amazing service they provide to our communities day in and day out.

The opportunity for police staff to take time out to refresh and rejuvenate with their families also acknowledges the important role that families play. Without their support behind the scenes, the invaluable work of our police staff would not be possible.

The opportunity to observe and learn from Police practice in international jurisdictions, which the fellowship also facilitates, is of significant value to New Zealand. As is the opportunity to undertake international study and mix with other experts in a particular sphere of policing.

It promotes better and more effective policing for the benefit of our communities; it allows for successful programmes and initiatives overseas to be reviewed for their relevance to our country; and it allows for the professional development of the fellows themselves.

It also fits with the inter-connected world we live in, where New Zealanders are increasingly seeing themselves as global citizens, most notably in the younger generation coming through.

The world is becoming a smaller and more connected place, with the nature of current and emerging threats continuing to become more complex and increasingly organized - as well as transnational.

How successful we are in addressing many of those threats is dependent on both strong international partnerships and relationships as well as the quality and the capability of the support we provide.

I urge you to make the most of those partnerships and relationships you will develop.

Thank you again Sir Noel and members of the Fisher family for having the foresight to make this initiative possible, and thank you to the 2018 fellows who have been the first worthy recipients of the fellowship.

It is always a privilege to speak to a group of women and men who are dedicated to creating a better and safer future for all New Zealanders.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your hard work and commitment in doing what New Zealanders recognise is an incredibly difficult, but important job.

As Police Minister, I am enormously proud of the work New Zealand Police does every day.

When I visit Police stations around the country I am extremely heartened by the calibre and passion of the fantastic men and women who have chosen a career less ordinary but most important.

I look forward to hearing of your travels – I hope you have had a well-earned break with your families, gained insights that will be of value to Policing in New Zealand, and have come back refreshed and ready to once again tackle the challenging job of preventing harm in our communities.