Steady increase in public confidence and safety perceptions

Steady increase in public confidence and safety perceptions

National News

Public confidence in Police and peoples' sense of safety in their communities has been steadily increasing since 2008.

Latest trust and confidence survey results released by NZ Police show public confidence in Police has increased from 75 percent in 2009/10 to 77 percent in 2010/11. The survey also shows increases in peoples' sense of safety in their neighbourhoods and town centres.

The research, conducted by Gravitas Research & Strategy Ltd since 2008, shows public confidence in Police has increased every year from 69 percent in 2008/9 to 77 percent in 2010/11. Approximately 10,000 people are interviewed annually for the survey.

The research is conducted by telephone interview, with almost four in every 10 people having had some kind of contact with Police in the previous six months.

The survey was initiated in 2008 to provide Police with an independent means of monitoring how the public perceives Police, and the quality of service people received when interacting with Police.

Deputy Commissioner Mike Bush says the results are a great tribute to the hard work and professionalism of Police staff throughout the country.

"The results are a reflection of our commitment to making our communities safer."

Mr Bush says many factors influence people's trust and confidence with police and their satisfaction with police services.

"It's likely that things like our response to the Pike River tragedy and the Christchurch earthquakes will have impacted on public perceptions of police.

"However, we do know that the kind of experience people have when they interact with us is also important.

"This includes factors like feeling they were treated fairly, which remains high at 89 percent. Ratings of police competence have also remained high at 91 percent.

"It's encouraging to see improved perceptions of police activity in communities such as parts of Counties Manukau, where Neighbourhood Policing Teams have been in place for some time," he says

In Counties Manukau, people’s perceptions of police responsiveness to the needs of the community have risen from 70 percent in 2009/10 to 77 percent in 2010/11 and police involvement in activities in communities is up from 68 percent to 74 percent.

Neighbourhood Policing Teams are in the process of being implemented nationally. Mr Bush believes the positive impact they have had in Counties Manukau will be reflected in other districts as the staff involved have an opportunity to form relationships and engage with local communities at a more personal level.

"We have also seen improvements in satisfaction where people have had contact with police at the road side, at Police stations or by telephone," he says.

"Overall satisfaction levels for roadside interactions remains high, up from 80% in 2009/10 to 82% in 2010/11.

"Police Communications Centres have increased for the third consecutive year and are up from 82% in 2009/10 to 85% in 2010/11.

"People visiting our stations also report an increase in overall satisfaction from 74% in 2009/10 to 81% in 2010/11," says Mr Bush.

"This is an important survey which helps inform our decision-making as we work to further improve our service and the way we interact with members of the public.

"I congratulate Police staff on their hard work and commitment to our communities, as reflected in these excellent results," says Mr Bush.

The full results can be found at www.police.govt.nz/about-us/publication/citizens-satisfaction-survey-rep...

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Contact: Russell Pilcher 0274370148