Michael O’Brien MP, Member for Malvern, was pleased to welcome Victoria Police Protective Services Officers (PSOs) commencing deployment to Holmesglen railway station this week.
“PSOs will now patrol Holmesglen station every night from 6pm until the last train”, Mr O’Brien said.
“PSOs are making a real difference to public safety through their work in assisting rail commuters by securing train stations, car parks and surrounds”.
“Holmesglen is the first train station to have PSOs deployed in the Malvern electorate. I look forward to further PSOs being progressively rolled out to other stations in the near future,” he said.
“While on duty, PSOs have the power to take action against anti-social behaviour. With training under the supervision of Victoria Transit Police, PSOs can apprehend, detain, arrest and remove any offenders threatening the safety of other commuters,” Mr O’Brien said.
PSOs have issued more than 12,000 infringement notices for a wide range of offences, including being drunk in a public place, possessing alcohol, graffiti and possession of weapons.
Mr O’Brien said the PSOs had been demonstrated to reduce crime and improve public safety where they have been stationed.
“The Coalition Government wants to encourage people to use our public transport system, including at evenings. Knowing that PSOs will be patrolling local train stations should give residents greater confidence and security in travelling by train,” Mr O’Brien said.
The Victorian Coalition Government has committed to recruiting and deploying 940 PSOs to the railway network by November 2014 as part of a $212 million investment.
“As well as 940 PSOs, an additional 1,700 frontline police officers are being recruited, which represents the largest single law enforcement recruitment exercise in Victoria’s history,” Mr O’Brien said.