Covid 19 Delta outbreak: Acts David Seymour says crime on rise, police border patrols put Aucklanders lives at risk

Act Party leader David Seymour says crime is on the rise in Auckland as hundreds of police are assigned to border duties in the region.

He said last night a dairy in the central Auckland suburb of Mount Eden that was raided recently was targeted again, along with the liquor store next door.

“One police officer showed up. He told the owner there were no other officers available to join him. He asked a member of the public to look through the shop with him in case the offenders were still there.

“I have spoken to another dairy owner who was bashed with a tyre iron. There have also been reports of muggings and bashings in Newmarket,” Seymour said.

One of the owners of a Mt Eden dairy that was raided recently said they were hit again this week.

She said her family wanted to raise awareness about crime rates getting worse, not better.

There have also been reports of muggings and bashings in Newmarket.

A response to a Parliamentary question revealed that 271 officers have been assigned to Auckland borders to date.

“Violent criminals know that with police off the beat they can carry out offences with less chance of being caught.

“The Government needs to answer why it has taken police off the beat to stand at checkpoints. People in my community feel unsafe and lives are being put at risk.”

Seymour said the Auckland border does not open untilDecember 15 so the Government needs to address the rise in crime urgently.

Police staff manning Auckland’s boundary checkpoints and managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) facilities are reporting burnout, fatigue and a strain on resources elsewhere.

Many are putting in a lot of extra hours, carrying out extra duties and “it seems never ending to them”, the Police Association said.

“Police are the same as everyone else, you can only have so much resilience and it’s just running out,” president Chris Cahill said.

Deploying police staff outside Auckland to help with border checkpoints around the Supercity has cost more than $236,125 as of October 1, Police News reports.

Some delegates at the annual Police Association conference said frontline staff were being taken away from “business as usual” to staff special projects and Covid checkpoints.

“The biggest challenge is the huge drain on staff away from core roles for checkpoint duties and Covid hotels. No work group is untouched,” one person said, according to Police News.

– Additional reporting, NZ Herald

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