Half a century on from the 1958 Police Act, the Policing Act 2008 takes effect from tomorrow.
Official commencement of the new legislation will be marked with a parade of recruits and staff at the Royal New Zealand Police College tomorrow morning (commencing at 7.30am).
Commissioner Howard Broad says 1 October officially marks the updating of 50 year-old legislation, and draws to an end more than two-and-a-half years worth of review, and consultation on the new Act.
"The Policing Act 2008 ushers in modern legislation, better equipping Police to deal with the challenges of contemporary policing in New Zealand and offshore. It also introduces a modern employment framework," he says.
New powers are introduced for those at the frontline - such as the ability to take a suspect's particulars before summonsing them, and at a location other than a Police station.
"There are a number of significant features in the new Act designed to deal with the here and now, but also to provide flexibility for the future," Commissioner Broad says.
"For the first time ever, we acknowledge the importance of our partnerships in policing. This recognises the value we place on working with others to make New Zealand a safer place."
The Act also clarifies the independence and impartiality of the office of constable - the foundation of New Zealand's system of policing.
Following its third reading, the Policing Bill was passed in the House on 2 September and received Royal Assent from the Governor General on 16 September.
A comprehensive implementation plan is well advanced within Police to effect the many changes the new Act will introduce.
For further information contact Rob Lee, ph: (04) 470 7348 or 027 6755 399; If you want to attend the parade, please contact Katrina Graham at the Royal New Zealand Police College, ph: (04) 238 3572 or 027 4419 216.