Box Hill police station is the first in Australia to be awarded with a nationally-recognised Communication Access Symbol.
The symbol means that the police officers at the station have the skills and strategies to communicate effectively with people with communication disability.
Box Hill Police Station is Australia’s first law enforcement agency to be involved in the significant project and will now proudly display the symbol in the watch house.
Officers have worked hard to earn this recognition, participating in tailored training sessions, and speaking openly and genuinely to trainers with lived experiences.
This award demonstrates to the community that the officers at Box Hill Station are they are now better equipped with the skills and confidence to communicate effectively with community members who have communication difficulties, both in person and on the phone.
The officers who participated in the training will now wear a Communication Access pin to help people identify police who have participated in the training.
The award follows the Victorian Equal Opportunities Human Rights Commission’s 2014 Beyond Doubt Report that documented the experiences of people who have a disability and how they report crime to police.
The report found that people with communication disabilities face considerable barriers at all points in the criminal justice system.
The project was made possible through a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Information, Linkages & Capacity Building National Readiness Grant.
Geelong Police Station is also set to receive the Communications Access Symbol following successful completion of the program.
Reviewed 18 November 2019