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New Zealand Police are going all out to recruit more people from diverse ethnicities and backgrounds to best serve the needs of a diverse population. The latest installment of the extraordinary stories recruitment campaign was recently revealed in Auckland.
The installation features Constable Aji Basra, whose extraordinary story is being highlighted to attract more young women and men like him to the job.
Constable Basra, a police officer in Counties Manukau, was called out to an emergency situation where a male was passed out on train tracks at a rail underpass in Auckland. A train was scheduled to arrive at any minute and the man’s life was at risk.
As the first police officer on the scene, and thinking on his feet, Constable Basra ran from the patrol car, pulling the seemingly intoxicated man to safety from the railway tracks, mere moments before the train arrived.
Constable Basra says "Nothing beats the feeling of doing a job where you’re out there to protect people. It was a better work story, but I hope it's never repeated. People and train tracks just shouldn't mix.
“It's our job to not only respond to incidents, but to help prevent them from happening in the first place. I became a cop to help people, but too often I have to save them from bad choices – but I know this guy learnt his lesson,” he says.
Constable Basra’s extraordinary story has been recreated as a street art installation at Kingsland Train Station with full support from KiwiRail, Auckland Transport and Veolia Transport . KiwiRail Chief Executive Jim Quinn says the artwork helps to highlight the issue of pedestrian safety around railway tracks.
Mr Quinn says "When people make bad choices around railway lines it can lead to tragic results. Since 2000, 147 pedestrians have died on railway tracks in New Zealand. Every single death or injury on the railway network is avoidable if people approaching it actively recognise the hazards that exist and obey the warning signs and signals.
“We're working hard with Police and other rail safety partners to raise awareness that people need to use their heads around tracks,” he says.
This latest recruitment drive using untold extraordinary stories is to help Police attract young leaders with communication skills, empathy and problem solving abilities. These skills are crucial to frontline policing in an era where prevention of crime and victimisation is at the heart of policing today.
NZ Police are looking to recruit between 160 and 240 frontline staff from July 2012 to June 2013. To take the first step in becoming a cop, go to http://www.newcops.co.nz/extraordinary