Members statements - 100 years of Women at Victoria Police (8.6.2017)

Written on the 9 June 2017

8 June 2017

COUNCIL 

Members statements - 100 years of Women at Victoria Police

GEORGIE CROZIER (LIB - Southern Metropolitan)

 

In 2017 we celebrate 100 years since the first female joined the Victorian police force, a proud police force that has seen many men and women give service in a variety of ways. In 2017 women are in the force in every area, but that was not always the case.

In 1917 there were two women employed, Madge Connor and Elizabeth Beers. They were known as 'agents', and their principal tasks included answering the phone and managing the front desk.

Other notable milestones for women include the first female detective in 1950 and in 1956 Kath Mackay was the first woman to reach the rank of sergeant.

By the early 1960s there were only a few women in the police force and those who wanted to join had to wait for another woman to retire or resign so that they could replace them. For 100 years these groundbreaking women forged a path for today's more than 3000 Victorian female police officers who are dealing with a very different policing environment.

During that 100 years there have been a number of women who have been role models and provided guidance and support to others, especially in very challenging times and indeed we do live in challenging times. The sad and horrific terrorist attacks in London over the weekend highlight the important nature of swift action by police who do extraordinary work in keeping the community safe.

Likewise the dreadful Brighton incident in my electorate of Southern Metropolitan Region on Monday evening reminds the community about the dangers police face each and every day. My thoughts go out to all of the police involved and especially those recovering from injuries inflicted on them by the gunman, and also to the young man who unnecessarily lost his life in this horrific and frightening crime.

There is no doubt that well-trained women can continue to make significant contributions to all areas of policing in a modern and sometimes challenging environment and they will continue to do so for the next 100 years.

Congratulations to all those women who have served over the past century and continue to serve in Victoria Police.


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