Eastern District Police will be attending a range of community meetings next week to support those severely impacted by Cyclone Gabrielle.
Eastern District Commander Superintendent Jeanette Park says more than a month on from the devastating cyclone, many continue to struggle with the loss of loved ones, property and livelihoods.
“The impact of Cyclone Gabrielle will be felt for years to come,” Park said.
“While we’re no longer in the immediate response phase, there’s still a huge amount of work to be done,” Park added. “We want the residents of Hawke’s Bay and Tairawhiti to know we’re here to support them and their needs are front of mind.”
At least four meetings, organised by the community and the local council, are scheduled for the coming week.
Police will have a presence at each of those meetings to ensure those attending have an opportunity to raise concerns and ask questions.
Since the cyclone, staff, including those from out of district, have carried out thousands of prevention activities, including reassurance patrols and proactive engagements with storm-hit communities.
Mobile Police Bases remain in district, ensuring Police Officers are highly visible in the places they’re needed most.
“Our mobile bases have been invaluable for connecting directly with our communities and providing a sense of reassurance,” Park said. “The feedback has been really positive and, operationally, it’s also given us a really clear picture of what’s happening on the ground.
“We know that people may have heightened concerns about crime, and we want to connect either in person, or via the dedicated 105 line,” Park added. “Our community is hugely resilient and we continue to work with them to provide support. In many cases our staff have gone above and beyond, and have mucked in to help those in need.”
Staff from around the country continue to support Eastern District.
“As we move through the recovery phase, there will be a managed reduction of those additional staff,” Park said.