Words by Jack ‘Chetch’ Miller
Mick Fuller has been appointed the next NSW Police Commissioner after a long and tumultuous race for the top spot, but is this the Police Commissioner NSW wants?
Besides from his obvious qualifications that the job required (16-years as a commissioned officer and the last seven at the executive level), Mr. Fuller is someone who is looking to change the way things have been done for the past 20-years.
What is exciting about his appointment is the stress he has been putting on prevention and disruption, as opposed to response, in regards to organised crime. What this means is that here we have a Police Commissioner who sees the value in preventative methods such as education, rather than knee jerk methods that only address a problem when it appears.
In a statement Mr. Fuller urged that “we need to get our policing model right on the ground. We need to get our police numbers right in the community, not just in metropolitan Sydney, but right across the state.
“The NSW police force will have a key focus on community first from Monday morning.
“We need to get the structure right because if we get the structure right we can fight…not just in response but we can disrupt, we can prevent.”
“We can fight organised crime, not just responding to it but prevent it and disrupt it.”
With Mr. Fuller choosing to focus his efforts on a more preventative approach as opposed to a reactionary, it begs the question, will this have an effect on Sydney’s lockout laws? The laws that were introduced in February of 2014 have had a devastating and lasting effect on the city of Sydney, with bars, clubs, and late night venues closing in the dozens due to the loss of late night trading.
However, this long and arduous battle may finally becoming to a sensible conclusion with the appointment of Mr. Fuller. If he truly believes that prevention over reaction is the answer, and that the community should and will come first, and be allowed to thrive, than a rethinking of the scheme that is the lockout laws is sure to be a top priority. As they are firmly rooted in moral panic and quick fix solutions that have refused to take into account the disastrous consequences that have befallen Sydney, its music scene, nighttime economy, and its standing as a global city.
Have we found our Batman?