Leading Senior Constable Leigh Johnson moved to Greater Shepparton from New Zealand at an early age and after a long career policing in Melbourne is excited about moving back to his adopted home where he can see the results of country policing. Here, we see Const. Leigh interacting with staff of the Ethnic Council and explaining his role with Shepparton’s cultural communities.
“You get a real closeness in country policing. You can really sense that if you do make a difference, that you’ll see the difference that you make.”
Working as a Multicultural Liaison Officer with the Proactive Policing Unit, Leigh is passionate about engaging with the Culturally And Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities and help foster trust and rapport with Victoria Police.
“My role week to week would encompass getting out to schools, getting out to places of faith, working with our multicultural leaders, and really extending the blue hand of friendship.”
If you’re interested in country policing, learn more by visiting: https://www.police.vic.gov.au/police-officer-careers
So the power of regional policing in particular is you actually get to know your community well … and I think that’s really important. I could do my work in Melbourne and do my policing but not really knowing the depths of my community. Here you get to really know your community. You get that real sense of closeness in country policing.
You can really sense that if you do make a difference – you will see the difference that you make. My role is working with the whole communities the culturally and linguistically diverse communities.
What that entails really is to get out there and and build trust and rapport and really extend the blue hand of friendship. My role week to week would encompass getting out the schools, getting out to places of faith, working with some of our multicultural leaders. Along with that is understanding that some of these people come from quite traumatic places; as police officers it’s about just saying to our local community that we’re actually here to help and support you.
The more you do that the more people trust you and get to know your face the better. I’m out there being proactive and saying this is who I am; and then ultimately people do come into the police station; they do phone you!
If you can make a difference with with one person in whatever way; if you can refer a person from a community in a certain direction and make life a touch easier for them that’s important. Ireally enjoy what I do and feel very fortunate to have this role.