Insight 1980 - The Changing Role of the Police

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Media type
Documentary radio programs
Nonfiction radio programs
Radio programs
Sound recordings
RNZ Collection
Glasgow, Neville, 1930-2019, Producer
Gibson, Bryan, Interviewee
Moodie, Robert Alexander, 1938-, Interviewee
CUMMINGS, Maurie, Interviewee
Dallow, Ross, Interviewee
DAVIES, Brian, Interviewee
Shallcrass, Jack, Interviewee
CAMERON, Neil, Interviewee
Young, Warren, Interviewee

Two Insight documentaries in which Neville Glasgow explores the changing role of the police in society. He notes that these programmes were made during the era of the Commission of Inquiry into the Arthur Allan Thomas case. The programme was recorded before the Commission's findings were made public.

The first programme focuses on the social role of the police. Interviewees include: Assistant Commissioner of Police Brian Gibson; Superintendant Morrie Cummings of the Police College; and Dr Bob Moodie of the Police Association. All comment on the changing role of the police.

Inspector Ross Dallow speaks on street policing in Auckland in the 1970s, when there was increasing social disorder on the streets. He also talks about task force operations, and community policing.

Constable Syd Holmes, a Youth Aid officer in Wellington, talks about his work.

Brian Gibson talks about the community constable's role. Bert Dunn, a community constable in Tawa, talks about his work. Constable Barry Hart, a new police officer in Porirua, talks about frustrations in his role. Sid Holmes then comments on whether the police officer is a social worker.

The second programme looks at the enforcement role of police work in an increasingly violent society. Chief Superintendant Brian Davies is interviewed, and Chief Superintendant Stewart McEwan of the Wellington Police District talks about team policing units.

Police have recently been issued with new equipment to deal with the increasing violence they encounter. Wellington lawyer George Rosenberg is concerned about the increasing use of force by police, and gives some examples. Bob Moodie of the Police Association comments.

Increasing use of firearms by police is an area of public concern. The role of the Armed Offenders Squad is discussed. Criminology lecturer Dr Warren Young and Victoria University law lecturer Neil Cameron comment on the perceived move towards arming the police.

Detective Chief Inspector Bruce Scott and education lecturer Jack Shallcrass comment about public anger at conflict between police and ethnic minorities in Wellington.