Stepping up to stop violence
POLICE have taken to foot-patrolling Maryborough’s Queens Park at random in an attempt to stop drunken attacks on Fraser Coast Regional Council workers.
Sergeant Bob Baumann said police had received a number of complaints over the past couple of months of staff being confronted as they went about their daily duties.
“Police are now conducting foot patrols through the area at irregular times,” he said.
Council CEO Andrew Brien has also visited staff on site to hear their concerns.
Mr Brien said a particular incident at Queens Park on July 21 where an employee was “accosted by a drunk” had prompted a reinforcement of staff safety measures in the park.
“We have also met with senior police representatives who have given an undertaking to provide appropriate resources in Queens Park to deal with drunken behaviour,” he said.
“We are now holding regular staff meetings to ensure our staff can air their concerns and are briefed on procedures should they be confronted while carrying out their council duties.”
All council staff working in Queens Park now carry a mobile phone with the direct number for Maryborough police on speed dial.
They have also been trained in dealing with confrontational and violent situations.
Mr Brien said that as part of a review of local legislation, the council would also investigate changing laws to see if it could introduce tighter controls on the consumption of alcohol in parks.
Up to 50 homeless people are believed to sleep in Queens Park every night.