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  • Dale Last

Petition draws thousands in crime fight

Thousands of Burdekin residents have called for their local police to be bolstered and funding for security patrols in an overwhelming response to a petition supported by Member for Burdekin Dale Last.

More than 3000 business owners and residents fed up with soaring youth crime in the Burdekin put pen to paper over recent weeks with Mr Last now assuring the community that this was not the end of the action.

“This community has sent a clear message to this state Labor government that the current approach to youth crime isn’t working and they aren’t willing to sit on their hands while young offenders run rife through their town,” Mr Last said.

“Now that the petition is closed, it will be tabled in parliament with a response from the Minister and I know that nothing short of what is being called for will be accepted by this community.”

“I want to personally offer my thanks to Steve Wagner who has worked tirelessly to ensure that anyone who wanted to sign the petition had the access and ability to easily do so.”

The petition which began in early February, called for a permanent increase in police officer numbers, including pain clothes officers, stationed at both Home Hill and Ayr in a bid to provide increased patrols with fully funded security patrols to occur until the additional police officers were assigned.

Mr Last said with night patrols having already proven to be effective in other North Queensland communities and a huge response to the petition, it was now up to the minister to explain why the Burdekin shouldn’t expect any less than what was being asked.

“Since this petition began we have already seen the federal government stump up funds to continue night patrols in another North Queensland community and there is certainly no reason why the same can’t be done in the Burdekin,” Mr Last said.

“Six years ago the Minister stood up in front of 200 members of this community with promises that we are still yet to see fulfilled. Now with 15 times the number of people who attended that meeting calling for more support for police and funded security patrols, the time for empty promises is over.”

“This community deserves to know that their local police have the resources they need to keep the community safe and if that means funding private security patrols to assist police efforts then there’s no excuse why that shouldn’t happen.”

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