THESE two police officers will be keeping local kids on the straight and narrow after they started work at Griffith PCYC last month.
Senior Constable Alex Davies and Senior Constable Pete Naisby will be dedicated full time to helping local youths aged between 10 and 18 – who might be heading down the path to trouble – to make better decisions in their lives.
“Our role is to actively engage young people in life and to try to get them to reconnect with the community so they feel responsible when they’re out in public places,” Senior Constable Davies said.
“We want them to feel attached to the community so they act the right way.”
Various community organisations will suggest young people they think need guidance to the PCYC police officers.
From there, Senior Constables Davies and Naisby will contact those young people and their families and work out a two-year plan to get them on the right track.
“We’re really targeting kids who are borderline going down the path to juvenile justice,” Senior Constable Davies said.
“Say they don’t fit in at school so they don’t go and during the day, they’re hanging out with kids on the street.
“Those are older kids who don’t go to school and they have legal access to alcohol and cigarettes.
“These younger kids haven’t learnt to make the right choices so they don’t know how to say no to these older kids.”
Instead, Senior Constable Davies said the younger students would be encouraged to spend time attending day programs run through the PCYC, where they can be coached into making better life decisions.
“My main goal is to reduce crime,” Senior Constable Davies said.
“The more time these kids spend with a person who has a positive influence, the more they realise they can get what they want by being good.”
Griffith PCYC senior manager Kym Neal said the newly-positioned officers were a coup for the city.
“It’s great for us. We’re here to work with young people and this really helps us out,” Ms Neal said.