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Officers become ‘expert’


I can sympathise with police commissioner Andrew Coster when he says police officers are not mental health experts, although that statement is not quite true. Most violence crimes have a mental health factor either initiating them or exacerbating them. Thus, police officers of any good length of service become, or should become, “expert” in dealing with mentally distressed persons simply by dealing with such situations.

Police used to be recruited from persons who had had successful histories of para-police work, such as ex armed forces personnel, school teachers and the like who have become “expert” in dealing with people under stress or who have had problematical backgrounds.

While there used to be minimum IQ requirements for police recruits, it was never so-called “high IQs” who made the best police, but those who had an “intrinsic intelligence” which was heightened through dealing with people under stress.

Even in today's “wally regimes” where no one has any degree of responsibility in dealing with our more difficult mental health and social issues, police do a good job generally. However, police are regularly stymied when they seek help from the actual mental health “professionals” for those who are suicidal or have mental health issues.

The general public would be frightened to hear the true stories of mental health “gatekeepers” pushing away those needing help, with ridiculous claims that there is nothing which can be done for people with drug problems, or those who have actually injured themselves or attempted suicide cannot be admitted for treatment because they have “not quite crossed the threshold for needing in-house treatment”. Some of those turned away eventually do kill themselves, and frustrated cops scramble for the desk jobs.

Dennis Pennefather

Ex police NCO

  1. Peter Jones says:

    I have no doubt that policing will get mentally harder for police when they are forced to harass and arrest people like me when the traffic lights get turned on. I don’t think many of them signed up for that.

    1. Ken Ovenden says:

      Hi Peter, yes it will get harder for Police and “No” they did not expect that they may/will take on new roles, but it is you who has the choice – vaccinate or just keep playing dumb, like “DURR, I just do not want to understand because I only like my tiny little bubble and I am that selfish, other people do not exist as far as I am concerned.” LOL

      1. John Fricker, Masterton says:

        I thought Peter was being silly but you beat him hands down. Takes a bit of doing does that.