Challenges of policing very remote communities

Philip Stenning1*, Clifford Shearing2, Janet Ransley3, Amanda Porterand Tariro Mutongwizo5

1 Griffith Criminology Institute, Griffith University
2 Griffith Criminology Institute, Griffith University
3 Griffith Criminology Institute, Griffith University
4 Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning, The University of Technology Sydney
5 Griffith Criminology Institute, Griffith University

*corresponding author: p.stenning@griffith.edu.au

In this paper we will present some preliminary findings of research that we have been undertaking, in collaboration with the Queensland Police Service, on the policing of very remote communities in the Far North and far West of Queensland. We will discuss the theoretical underpinnings of the project, describe the six communities in which the research was undertaken, some of the ethical issues involved, and how QPS officers engaged with these communities in doing “community-based policing” and promoting community resilience against crime, disorder and the impact of natural emergencies such as fire, storms and floods. We will also discuss the views of community members on these matters, and recommendations to the QPS as to how better to select and prepare officers to undertake policing in such very remote communities, and how to support them during their assignments there. Finally, we will raise some more general questions about how police, in partnership with community members and organizations, can promote resilience, in addition to/as part of law enforcement, in the communities that they police.

Biography

Professor Philip Stenning was awarded his Doctorate in Law (S.J.D.) at the University of Toronto in 1983. He came to the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Griffith University in 2011. His research interests have included policing, prosecutions, accountability in criminal justice, and Aboriginal justice issues.

Professor Janet Ransley served as Research Director at the Queensland Legislative Assembly before joining the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Griffith University in 1999. She was awarded her PhD in 2001. Her research interests have included policing, regulatory approaches to crime reduction, crime and justice policy, and integrity in criminal justice.

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