A well-earnt Christmas and New Year to everyoneLooking back on 2021 a highlight for me has been the renewed freedoms we have gained in the latter part of the year.
I personally will never again take for granted the ability to get behind the wheel and travel into regional New South Wales.
A recent highpoint has been travelling to Port Stephens, Ballina, Tweeds Head and Grafton to visit with and present recently retired members with watches from the PANSW.
Although it was pleasant to recognize the many years of service that these highly-respected members had given to their communities, some remained deeply affected by their policing careers. This was troubling to see and I believe that more needs to be done in this space to address these issues related to mental health.
A major Award victoryOne of the key milestones of the year has been delivering a highly satisfactory result on the 2021 Award. The membership vote held between 11-26 October resulted in a resounding ‘Yes’ for the salary offer.
At the time PANSW Police News was going to print the Award was with the Industrial Relations Commission and on track to be finalised. This Award was a huge contrast to the difficult battle we fought in 2020. The new Award will run for three years, providing a cumulative increase of more than 6% into members’ salaries over that time as well as increases to the Superannuation component.
Just as significantly your Association has secured – through our MOU with the Government – certainty for major protections, namely for the Police Blue Ribbon Insurance (Death and Disability) scheme and Workers Compensation exemption.
This victory is a reward for the work in putting our case forward in a consistent and strong manner. Improving your entitlements and working conditions will always remain at the heart of the work that only the PANSW can do in your best interests.
Moving ahead into 2022Next year will continue to present new opportunities and challenges.
One of the early priorities for 2022 will be the roll-out of Optional Disengagement. We will continue to work alongside the NSWPF to achieve the best outcome possible for this important new scheme. We will feature as many details as we are able to share on this in our regular communications to members.
The new CommissionerOn 24 November, the announcement was made that Deputy Commissioner Karen Webb APM has been appointed to the position of Commissioner of the NSW Police Force. Her appointment is a historic first for the state and a forwardthinking decision by the Government.
We have had an excellent working relationship with all of the Commissioner’s Executive team, including Karen, and look forward to that continuing into the future.
A time to celebrate and reflectThis is a time of year to reflect on another challenging year where the hard work of every single police officer across the state has made a real difference to the people of New South Wales.
It is important to thank you all not just for the ‘special’ duties you have been tirelessly performing but every aspect of your duties.
Across city and country, please reflect on the contributions you have made in 2021 to the neighbourhoods and communities, townships and suburbs that you live and work in.
Many of you no doubt will be in uniform over coming weeks. On behalf of the PANSW Executive, made up of serving officers, and the PANSW team, I wish you a safe and joyful Christmas season and a Happy New year with your families and loved ones.