2011/07: Should there be armed protective services officers on Melbourne train stations after dark?
Introduction to the media issue
Video clip at right:
Channel 10 news item from April 2011 after Police Commissioner Simon Overland persuaded the state government to modify its plan for Protective Services Officers on Melbourne's railway stations.
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What they said...
'My concern is that ... you might get a situation where these officers panic and someone gets shot'
Liberty Victoria president, Spencer Zifcak
'We recognised this pattern of train violence in opposition and pledged to do all we could to improve safety and security for travellers'
Victorian premier, Ted Baillieu
The issue at a glance
The Victorian government has pledged that as of July 1, 2011, there will be armed Protective Services Officers (PSOs) at all Melbourne metropolitan railway stations to guarantee commuters' safety after dark.
As the policy has got nearer to implementation there has been a variety of objections raised from the Opposition, civil libertarians, the Victoria Police Association and the Rail, Tram and Bus Union.
The cost of implementing the proposal has increased as training is to be extended and additional facilities installed on stations to help the PSOs perform their job.
Despite this, the Government maintains its policy will be put in place as scheduled, though the roll-out period has now been identified as four years.
The plan continues to have its detractors.