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SA police hit hard by COVID-19


The state’s police union has launched a campaign for better resourcing, saying understaffing due to COVID-19 has made officers stressed and fatigued.

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The Police Association will launch its campaign today, highlighting the impact of COVID-19 on frontline officers and their response time.

The association has pointed to findings from an internal survey showing some officers are burned out by chronic understaffing and the additional tasks they’ve been needed to undertake.

The research, commissioned by the association, surveyed 1037 members and found 65 per cent of officers thought the job was having a negative effect on their home life.

The survey also found 71 per cent of officers have had their work impacted by COVID-19.

But while the lives of officers have been negatively impacted, the survey says there is a strong working culture within the force.

“Right now, we can’t match the demand,” the association’s president Mark Carroll says in one of the campaign’s ads.

“You might have to wait for an hour, even longer, as police officers pick up the slack for other government departments.

“When cops either retire or leave the job, just replacing them isn’t enough. You actually need to grow the force, so when you need us we’ll be there.”

The association will use the survey in talks with new Police Minister Joe Szakacs to push for more resources.

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