07 December 2012
Another incredibly busy and incident-packed year is coming to an end at Auckland International Airport. While our crime figures remain impressively low, rapid growth in infrastructure and significant increases in the demands for our services has become apparent. Alongside responding to local “crime and crash” demands, airport staff members also offer a world class service to their organisational peers, both around New Zealand and the world.
We have found ourselves dealing with some tragic events that have put New Zealand on the map this year, highlighting a facet of airport policing often forgotten. Our interaction with family members, travelling to New Zealand to face the enormity of their loss or bringing their loved ones home, has attracted high-level praise from families across the globe.
As interest in New Zealand continues to rise, it is likely that passenger numbers will soar as a result of new markets emerging. Each of these new areas brings its own potential risk for police and their border colleagues – people smuggling, drug trafficking, document fraud, weapons and cyber crime to name but a few. Over the next 12 months and beyond, the Airport Police will focus on how we can acknowledge the changing world in which we operate, meet the needs of a commercially sensitive community, drive down crime and prevent victimisation.
Over and above this, it has been an incredible year. We have worked with senior government visitors, heads of state, minor and major celebrities and met some amazing people – from Olympic gold medalists to everyday passengers arriving and departing the Land of the Long White Cloud – and that’s what makes our working day so varied, rewarding and exciting.
As if all of this wasn't enough to occupy us, we note that the decorations are once more in place, and this can mean only one thing – we now head towards our busiest period, Christmas and the summer holidays. It’s a period where passenger numbers rise enormously and the demands for service increase even further.
Throughout the festivities, Police staff will be on hand, as always, 24 hours a day to help and guide visitors, staff and passengers; the face of the New Zealand Police at the international border. We wish all of our readers a safe Christmas and enjoyable holiday period.
PS If you see a rotund, jolly gentleman in a large red suit carrying a sack full of gifts on his back, don't report him to Police – he's one of the good guys!