Wage dispute forces police to waive fines
TWEED police will join their NSW colleagues in waiving fines indefinitely early next month as they fight a government proposal to remove protections for injured officers.
From August 3 there will be an “open ended” fine-free period with police refusing to write tickets for a range of misdemeanours, including traffic offences.
The NSW state government wants officers to sacrifice sick leave and death and disability allowances to fund a pay rise of four per cent - an offer the Police Association of NSW has rejected.
On Monday, 200 officers voted to push ahead with the fine blackout, the second in a month.
Tweed spokesman for Police Association of NSW Andrew Eppelstun said the free-fine period will last as long as it has to.
“Police will use their discretion as to whether they will write a ticket, or give a caution or if an offence is serious enough, they will place people directly before the court,” Mr Eppelstun said.
“Obviously, we would never put the community at risk, but we need to show the government that we are very serious.
The association says the removal of protections for injured workers would financially cripple officers hurt on the job.
Under the current award, police injured on the job receive full pay until they return to work or exit the force.
“It's ridiculous and hypocritical,” Mr Eppelstun said.
Mr Eppelstun said other industrial action will be taken besides fine-free periods although nothing had been decided yet.
Police refused to issue traffic fines for a week at the beginning of the month.