A petition has been launched in a bid to convince the state government to upgrade the Sippy Downs Police Station to operate 24 hours a day.
The LNP’s Member for Buderim Brent Mickelberg created the petition and said it was time for the station to get additional resources.
“Just 10 officers are allocated to the Sippy Downs Police Station. That’s even less than when it was opened in 2009, and our population has almost doubled since then,” he said.
“We need the resources so police can be more proactive in crime prevention and engage with the community, not just respond to critical incidents.
“Police from the Sippy Downs station aren’t just looking after the Sippy Downs and Palmview communities, they are also being tasked into Brightwater, Mountain Creek and even Buderim.”
A Queensland Police Service spokesperson said there was no plan to upgrade Sippy Downs to a 24-hour station.
“QPS regularly assesses service demand, available resources, officer safety, emerging crime trends and population growth to ensure optimum service delivery across the North Coast Region,” the spokesperson said.
“While staffing figures will fluctuate from time to time, the QPS have adequate staff and resources to deliver professional policing services to all Sunshine Coast residents and visitors.
“Like most areas, the Sunshine Coast District would always like additional resources, however has the discretion and flexibility to move its resources around as demand dictates. Modern-day policing is about having agility in service delivery.
“The priorities of Sippy Downs police remain focused on the safety of local communities, their officers and ensuring the highest levels of service delivery are maintained at all times.”
Mr Mickelberg said burglary and car thefts were spiking in the region and having more resources at Sippy Downs would help reduce crime.
“Our community has experienced a 188 per cent increase in unlawful use of a motor vehicle offences since Labor came into power in 2015, and a 79 per cent increase in home break-ins,” he said.
“The Sippy Downs station is currently open 8am to 4pm Monday to Friday, but criminals don’t keep to business hours.
“Our petition will put the community’s voice on the record in calling on the state government to make the Sippy Downs Police Station a priority in this year’s budget.”
The QPS spokesperson said Sippy Downs was serviced by more than just the officers stationed there.
“The true reflection of staffing response cannot be assessed by the number of general duties staff alone,” they said.
“Stations are supported by several operational district resources, including officers within the Highway Patrol groups.
“Importantly, the district is also supported by specialist police functions which include officers in Dog Squad, Forensic Crash Unit, Counter Terrorism and Major Events, Missing Persons Unit, Homicide Investigation Unit, Drug Squad and more.
“Resources from across a policing region, district or central command are easily able to be deployed to meet changing service requirements. This is something our community expects from our government services.”
Sunshine Coast Division 6 Councillor Christian Dickson said the key message he was hearing from the community was that they want to see more police on the road.
“The number one issue within our community is policing and police resources,” Cr Dickson said.
“Our local police are doing a great job with what they’ve got, but they are resource poor.
“You can’t turn a blind eye to the crime happening around the state and it’s happening here, too.
“I’ve seen a push in Caloundra for more police resources to be allocated there, and we need that same attention here.
“Local Member Brent Mickelberg and I are behind the police. Let’s do everything we can to get them the resources they need to do their job.”
Do you have an opinion to share? Submit a Letter to the Editor at Sunshine Coast News via email@example.com. You must include your name and suburb.