Police recruits driven by a passion to help

Operational skills instructor Constable Rod Warrington, a policeman of almost 40 years' experience, says the recruits' enthusiasm for helping the community might seem cliched but is genuine. Picture: Scott Gelston

Operational skills instructor Constable Rod Warrington, a policeman of almost 40 years' experience, says the recruits' enthusiasm for helping the community might seem cliched but is genuine. Picture: Scott Gelston

Police reporter CAROLINE TANG and photographer SCOTT GELSTON visited the Tasmania Police Academy at Rokeby this week to find out what operational skills trainee constables were learning, about a month into their course.

A PASSION for helping people is a common theme among the 20 trainee constables at the Tasmania Police Academy, who expect to graduate before Christmas.

Few hands stayed down when operational skills instructor Constable Rod Warrington asked the group who had previously done roles that involved helping others or volunteering.

Constable Warrington, a policeman of almost 40 years' experience, said the recruits' enthusiasm for helping the community might seem cliched, but was genuine.

"It's quite humbling for us," he said.

"They join to help others.

"We have a whole heap of young people who are trying to make a difference.

"How can we say to them, `Don't try to change the world'?

"We say, `Never ever give up.' "It's great they are having a go."

Recruits in training at Rokeby. Picture: Scott Gelston

Recruits in training at Rokeby. Picture: Scott Gelston

Constable Warrington said he was teaching recruits how to help others, including in violent situations.

He asked the trainees who had been in a fight before, and only a couple raised their hands.

"They might have to take a risk to help others," Constable Warrington said.

He said police needed to be prepared for the worst that people might throw at them.

"We don't fight people, we arrest people," Constable Warrington said.

"We have to arrest violent offenders."

Course co-ordinator Senior Constable Rebecca Sulman said trainees were learning how to safely arrest a person and take that person into custody.

She said the "take down" procedure was one example, to ensure an offender was taken safely to the ground and handcuffed while under arrest.

"They need to ensure the safety of all people included in the incident," Senior Constable Sulman said.

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