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Issue No. 410 February 2017

Safety training for front counter staff

Trudi Brooking has been applying her training to her work at Auckland Central.

New training is under way and stations are trialling a new front counter safety design to help staff, volunteers and the public be safer and feel safer in Police premises.

The developments are part of a project to develop a consistent nationwide front counter safety framework, initially being trialled at police stations in Waikato and Bay of Plenty.

In addition to the construction work, officer safety alarms have been distributed to front counter support staff where requested and safety training has been delivered to 96 percent of these staff and their supervisors.

“For Police to achieve our purpose our people need to be safe and feel safe,” says Assistant Commissioner Districts Allan Boreham.

“This training was designed for staff who work at the front counter areas of police stations to provide them with the skills and knowledge to make timely, well-informed decisions relating to risk assessment.

“We’ve had very positive feedback from participants. All new employees in front counter roles will complete the training during their induction and an annual refresher will be introduced for all front counter staff.”

The one-day workshop provides essential safety information, use of the TENR risk assessment tool and de-escalation through communication.

Trudi Brooking, Customer Services Manager at Auckland Central, says she has already applied techniques learned from the workshop.

“I use the communication techniques I learned at the training all the time,” she says.

“I was recently dealing with a particularly angry person and due to now having the right risk assessment tools to communicate effectively with him, I was able to get a positive outcome for him and for me - it gave me a great sense of achievement.

“The workshop has given both my team and myself more confidence to do our job - we can give more focus to customer service rather than worrying about what could go wrong.

“I was also really pleased the workshop covered the importance of near-miss reporting. It’s important to learn from the different types of situations we face and make improvements to help prevent something more serious happening in the future.”

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