Northern Star

NSW cops rally against D&D changes

A DEFIANT group of Northern Rivers police officers went to great lengths to attend an "unprecedented" protest rally in Sydney yesterday.

Three thousand NSW Police Force officers descended on Parliament House to protest against the State Government's proposed changes to the Death and Disability (D&D) Scheme.

About 12 police from the Tweed/Byron, Richmond and Coffs/Clarence Local Area Commands (LAC) boarded a bus at 10pm on Monday and drove through the night to attend the rally.

Immediately after the fiery protest finished the local cops were back on the bus and heading home as many of them had to work today.

Police Association of NSW (PANSW) Northern Region executive member Tony King said the effort made by local officers to attend the rally showed their passion for the controversial changes.

"Members are really against these changes, hence the lengths they went to," he said.

"We want the government to see some common sense and remove the bill from parliament and come back to negotiations to achieve an outcome that is fair and equitable to all."

Police Minister Michael Gallacher announced an overhaul to the D&D Scheme, which cost $760 million last year alone, that would replace lucrative lump-sum payouts with an insurance protection scheme.

Mr Gallacher said the changes would encourage officers to rehabilitate and return to work.

He said proposed changes recently put forward by PANSW would still represent a "vastly expensive scheme" and would not encourage officers to go back to work.

As a result of negotiations with PANSW, Mr Gallacher announced yesterday the government would up its D&D proposal by $80 million.


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