Monday, 20 August 2018 - 1:06pm |
National News

Commissioner details allocation of 1800 police

5 min read

News article photos, audio and videos (1 items)

Wing 317 recruits

Police Commissioner Mike Bush has today confirmed further details around the allocation of the 1800 additional officers, following a $298.8 million increase for Police in Budget 2018.

“Our organisation aspires for New Zealand to be the world’s safest country. These 1800 officers, alongside 485 support staff, will really enhance our work to keep people safe, and ensure they feel safe,” says Mr Bush.

“I am delighted to confirm that all 12 policing districts will receive a significant boost over the next few years. This will enable police to increase our visibility and presence across the country,” says Mr Bush

“Today’s allocation will significantly build our frontline capability, and lift the level of policing services we deliver to both our urban and regional communities.

“This will result in more crime prevention activity and improve police’s ability to respond, investigate and resolve crime – including a focus on reducing reoffending. The new staff will also support our effort to reduce death and injury on our roads,” says Mr Bush.

Mr Bush says 1280 of the new staff will be deployed to districts, including 200 staff with a specific focus on preventing crime related to gangs and drug-related offending.  

“A big part of this package is the unprecedented investment to combat the harm caused by organised crime, gangs and the supply of methamphetamine in our communities.” 

A further 520 will be national roles aiming to counter high-level organised crime, break national and international drug supply chains and to train, support and coordinate local teams to prevent harm. They include specialist authorised officers to grow and develop our digital frontline in cybercrime and other specialist areas to reflect modern policing.

Features of the 1800 allocation include:

·         455 more officers in Police’s frontline emergency response to respond to calls for service and boost support to regional communities

·         325 more officers in prevention-focused positions – working to help youth, prevent family harm and reduce repeat offending

·         121 officers to establish new Precision Targeting Teams in every district – to target serious and prolific local offenders to reduce burglary, robbery and other violence

·         187 new investigators focused on current and historic complex cases including adult sexual assault and child protection

·         500 national-level investigators and specialists to focus on organised criminal networks, national security, financial and cyber-crime

·         146 investigators to make up Serious and Organised Crime Taskforces in every district – supporting local and national-level colleagues

·         54 new Crime and Drug Prevention Officers – district-based positions working alongside organised crime specialists to provide pathways away from crime and addiction, including for the young and those on the periphery of gang life

·         12 new permanent roles at the Police College to train and upskill our people.

“Today’s allocation decisions have taken into account feedback from frontline staff, projected population growth, changing crime patterns, and other priority areas,” says Mr Bush.

“Of course, police work in a dynamic and changing environment, and if the facts on the ground materially change, then we would look at where our resources are required to keep people safe.”

Mr Bush says District Commanders are now commencing further work to determine deployment decisions at an area and station level.

“Our communities will benefit greatly through this investment as our staff work to prevent crime, victimisation and help vulnerable people turn their lives around.

“There are currently 340 recruits training at The Royal New Zealand Police College, with 80 more starting every four weeks.  We have record numbers of applications, but we are still keen to hear from quality applicants.”

Location (policing district)

Police allocation*

District Growth







Auckland City



Counties Manukau






Bay of Plenty





















National Operations & RNZPC






*indicative placement of 1800 additional police above October 2017 target staffing levels.

Questions and Answers

How have you decided on the allocation for each district?

We have very carefully considered where the additional staff should go, and where they can make the most difference. Allocation planning was informed by projected population growth, changing crime patterns, and areas of priority and increasing demand.

Every district was visited as part of the process, frontline staff were met with to discuss their experiences, and these insights were carefully listened to. District Commanders and other senior Police leaders were also involved in final decision-making.

Police, just like any other government organisation, has key targets to meet and it is imperative that we fulfil our commitments to the Government and the public, and ultimately to keep our communities safe.

What are Precision Targeting Teams?

Precision Targeting Teams are focused units that will work closely with district intelligence analysts to target serious and prolific offenders to reduce burglary, robbery and other violence.

They will focus on those who wreak the most havoc on communities, those who intimidate, rob, and break into home after home meaning communities are not safe and do not feel safe.

They are distinct from our general frontline response, but will help reduce demand on their colleagues in this area. Particular focus areas will be determined on the needs of each district.

We know prevention sometimes means apprehending recidivist offenders before they commit 20 further crimes. We can’t help anyone change their ways and get the support they need to stop offending, if we don’t identify them in the first place – and the earlier the better, for everyone.  That’s what these teams are all about.

Will the standard for recruits need to be dropped to recruit this many police?

No. We will not be lowering recruitment standards.

There is, quite rightly, a high standard for entry into the Police. But we want people from a broad range of backgrounds and we encourage anyone who wants the best for their community to come and talk to us.

As Police, we always want to keep the public safe and we continue to push ourselves to do more. This is reflected by the calibre of recruits we see coming through the Police College.

It can be a difficult job. As police officers you will face some of the toughest conditions anyone could ever face. But NZ Police is a fantastic place to work.  Our staff work hard, they are committed and they do a great job.

For more information on joining NZ Police, visit:


Issued by Police Media Centre

Media Kit (includes map of allocations and highlights) click here

Related downloads

Wing 317 recruits
Wing 317 recruits JPG - 60KB