Queenslanders have a new camera in the bag, but the government is warning it could be in for a big problem once it’s installed in their homes.
Key points:The new emergency camera will be placed in homes with security cameras, and can be used in self-defenceIf a member of the public is in a dangerous situation they can use the camera to call for helpThe camera is to be installed in Queensland homes by May 30, but Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has not said when it will be readyFor most Queenslanders, the camera is already in place in their home, which is why Queenslanders can use it if they are at home and can get a free trial.
But the camera can be installed at any time in Queenslanders homes without a charge, meaning residents are only charged for the time the camera has been active.
It’s a change to the state’s Emergency Services and Security Camera Act, which allows police to install cameras in areas where they have a “reasonable expectation” they will be used for self-protection.
Police say the camera will not be installed if a member in a potentially dangerous situation is present, but it could also be used to record their movements, including in self defence.
But Queenslanders for Local Government (LGFG) is urging the state to reconsider the policy and to install the camera in more homes.
“The LGFG have warned Queenslanders against installing cameras in their own homes for years, and we continue to urge the State Government to implement an effective, sensible emergency security camera policy,” LGFg spokeswoman Sarah Glynn said.
“With the introduction of cameras in Queensland, LGFGs are now able to protect themselves, their property and their communities.”
This is a policy that should be implemented in all parts of Queensland.
“Ms Glynn told the ABC it was important to consider what is the best way to prevent Queenslanders from being at risk.”
If there is an opportunity for the LGF to use the emergency camera, they should be able to do so.
“It should be done at their own risk.”
Ms Palaszo said the new camera was installed at an address in Corowa in the north of the state, which was a member’s own property.
“I’m happy to see that it’s in place,” she said.
But LGFs Loyola and Tumukunu say they have already seen the effects of the new policy.
“We are concerned that this camera has already been installed, it’s there, and it’s been in place for several years,” Ms Glynn added.
“Our concern is that it will only increase, and there are many Queenslanders who live in vulnerable situations, and that’s why we want this to be the first camera installed.”
The Queensland Police Association (QPA) says it has already received many calls from members in the Corowa area and wants to see the camera installed in every home in the state.
“As a community we want to ensure that our residents are not at risk from a camera in their property, and to be honest we are very concerned about that,” QPA chief executive Chris O’Dwyer said.
The Queensland Government is planning to release a plan for how it will implement the camera by April, but a spokeswoman said there was no date for the rollout.
“There is no specific date yet, but we are planning to implement this camera system in Queensland as soon as the Queensland Government’s plan is ready,” she told the BBC.
Topics:police,health,law-crime-and-justice,public-sector,government-and,state-parliament,lifestyle-and%E2%80%99-health,publications,law,qld,australiaFirst posted May 02, 2020 07:57:33Contact Luke StolzenbergMore stories from Queensland