The Rotary Club of Howick Police annual Police Award was presented to the Commander of the Counties Manukau East Area Inspector Wendy Spiller at the club’s Tuesday dinner meeting at the Howick Club by President Gavin Green.
Normally the annual Award goes to an individual or group that has made an outstanding contribution to policing in the area. In introducing this year’s Award convenor David Owen said that the Covid 19 pandemic had placed additional stress and pressure on Police and that in discussion with Area Commander Inspector Wendy Spiller it was apparent that the whole area team had stepped up to the many new tests and challenges that the lockdown provisions had placed upon the force. In view of this it was decided that that this year’s Award should go to the entire Area Team with a suitable inscription: Presented to the Counties Manukau East Team for their outstanding work during these challenging times”.
 
In receiving the Award Inspector Spiller said “the pandemic itself had meant many changes to police duties including the more recent security required for managed isolation sites. Also placing pressure on their relatively new force was the death of colleague Mathew Hunt in Massey in June and adverse media attention the police came under as a consequence of the “Black Lives Matter’ demonstrations. Altogether these events have created extraordinary times and I am delighted with the way that the whole team in the Area went the extra mile to ensure that the normal and new police duties were carried out to a very high standard”.
 
She went on to say that “on the positive side general crime was well down and the community involvement through the 10 5 call in line helped them tremendously. Nationwide there was a 10 5 call received every 7 seconds. With increased stress family violence had unfortunately increased by 20%.
 
In concluding she said that “she also wanted to acknowledge the tremendous public support that they had received. This included verbal thanks, well wishing cards and even home baking. The Rotary Award is one of the highlights of the marvellous public support that makes the whole Area force feel appreciated and helps us do a better job for the community”.
 
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