Budget repair comes at a cost to WA Police, with 150 officers being offered a voluntary redundancy.
A Government spokesperson said police will participate in the voluntary targeted separation scheme, and will not impact on frontline capacity.
“The Treasurer announced in the state budget that police would participate in the voluntary targeted separation scheme as part of a whole of government effort to assist with budget repair,” the spokesman said.
“Critically the voluntary redundancies are only being offered on the condition it does not impact on frontline capacity.”
A recruitment plan is also being developed, with the positions being backfilled in 18 months time.
However, Shadow Police Minister, Peter Katsambanis, said the loss of 150 police jobs is a big blow.
”We know crime is going up, we know our police are already stretched… The thin blue line will now be stretched even thinner…” he said.
Mr Katsambanis said as tight as this budget might be, the government should put law and order as a priority.
“They cut the police budget last year, they cut it again this year and they’re now taking 150 police off the streets – we need more police, not less…” he stated.
The Opposition MP sees very little chance that in 18 months any of those officers, or any new officers will be returning, particularly with the freeze on recruitment.
“I think it’s time we started looking at how many more officers we need to have, rather than reducing the number of officers like this government has done,” he said.
Mr Katsambanis is calling on the State government to reprioritise, putting law and order, and community safety first.