2010

Authors

  • Louise Porter Louise Porter
  • Timothy Prenzler Timothy Prenzler
  • Jenny Fleming Jenny Fleming

This article examines a case study of Tasmania Police to explore strategies for complaint reduction. The study uses quantitative complaints data and qualitative interviews to examine a 15-year period from 1994/1995 to 2008/2009. During this time, complaints against Tasmania Police reduced substantially. Most significantly, public 'complaints against police' dropped by nearly 77% from a peak of 162 in 1996/1997 to 38 in 2008/2009. Data show that repeat complaints against individual officers were reduced, as were numbers of assault and excessive force allegations. Initiatives that were implemented during the period that appear to impact on complaint numbers include complaint profiling and training, and improved complaint handling. These and other initiatives are considered in light of the data patterns and lessons for other jurisdictions are discussed.