Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington, says the response to the ‘Reclaim the South Burnett’ crime petition (tabled 11th July) from the Minister for Police is too little, too late.
Mrs Frecklington said her calls for extra assistance for the Murgon and Cherbourg communities in particular had gone unnoticed for six months.
"It’s taken the Police Minister, Mark Ryan, half a year to finally realise something needed to be done to tackle the crime wave in the South Burnett," Mrs Frecklington said.
"It’s insulting for the community that their desperate calls have gone unheard.
"Why did it take a Police Officer being hurt during the terrible incident in Cherbourg just recently, before the Minister offered any help at all?
"It was even admitted in Murgon this week, by the Police Service, that it wasn’t until their officers were hurt that the Labor Government were kicked into action.
"I know the community is very disappointed it has taken so long. They have been living with the constant threat of break-in’s, stolen cars and property damage. It is taking its toll, especially on our elderly and children.
"While I welcome the deployment of a senior officer, and the Tactical Crime Squad, I am very concerned that this may be a band-aid solution.
"I really want to see a long-term strategy to boost police resources and restore safety, not a fly-in, fly-out response.
"There are also four new officers in Murgon, however, these are not new roles, just vacancies which have finally been filled. I will continue to fight on behalf of the community."
"I would also really like to congratulate and thank the South Burnett community for stepping up and signing the petition. While it has taken too long for crime in our region to be acknowledge, the support for the petition did highlight the importance and urgency of this issue," Deb said.