Greens call for IPCA to become Officer of Parliament

The Green Party is calling for the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) to become an Officer of Parliament so that its funding is not at the mercy of the Government of the day.

The Green Party is calling for the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) to become an Officer of Parliament so that its funding is not at the mercy of the Government of the day.

Information obtained by the Green Party shows the IPCA has investigated less than ten percent of the 3007 cases it accepted for investigation in the past four years, and instead sent more than 90 percent of those cases back to the police to investigate themselves.

At Select Committee last month, the IPCA made it clear it does not have enough funding to investigate all the complaints it receives.

“By making the IPCA an Officer of Parliament, it would not have to depend on the Minister of Justice to be funded properly and it would become a truly independent body capable of holding the Police and the Government to account,” said Green Party justice spokesperson David Clendon.

“When the IPCA is starved of funds, the integrity of the police force is compromised along with, potentially, the public’s trust and confidence in the Police.

“People need to know that when they make a serious complaint against the Police it will be investigated by an organisation truly independent to the Police. At the moment, more than 90 percent of the cases that warrant investigation are being sent back to the Police to investigate themselves. That defeats the purpose of an independent watchdog.

“The Gallen Report (2000) that led to the establishment of the IPCA also recommended from the beginning that it be answerable to Parliament rather than to the Government of the day.

“By making the IPCA an Officer of Parliament, the organisation’s funding would be set by a cross party committee of MPs, not a Minister who could be under pressure to find cost savings in their portfolio,” Mr Clendon said.

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