COTA Australia has collated information on a range of NSW Police Services for the aged.
The NSW Police Service is working hard to make things easier for older people and has a number of services that may help in particular situations.
Next of kin register
People who live alone can list a preferred contact in case of emergency with the Next of Kin register. You can also register your doctor, dentist and other medical alert contacts. The details are kept by your local police station to assist the ambulance service or police to contact your nominated person if needed.
The Police will give you a registered number along with a sticker and a keyring. You put the number on the sticker and the key ring, put the sticker in an obvious location in your home such as on the fridge, and carry the keyring with you at all times. The Next of Kin service is free. To register, speak to the Crime Prevention Officer at your local station or fill in the form here.
The Safely Home program is a joint partnership between Dementia Australia and the Police Missing Persons Unit. The person with dementia wears a stainless steel bracelet with a toll free phone number and a personal identification number linked to the police database.
This enables the police to identify someone who is lost and make arrangements for them to be returned home. The service may also be suitable for people with an intellectual disability. There is a nominal registration fee of $54. Dementia Australia also provide tips on how to encourage the person with dementia to wear the bracelet. Find out more.
Tips on safety and security
The Police have a video and a fact sheet with tips on safety for older people. This is available in 15 community languages as well as English. Find out more.
There is also a comprehensive brochure containing the latest information on keeping your home secure and preventing break-ins. Read the brochure
Police assistance line 131 444
This phone line is for reporting crimes and other incidents that are not a life threatening or other critical emergency. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. By using this line rather than calling your local station, you are freeing up Police Officers to do other work.
Once your report is completed, the information is immediately available to your local police. If the crime is too serious to be dealt with over the phone, the operator will advise you what to do next. In either case, they will arrange arrange for police to come and see you if appropriate.
Types of crime you can report to the assistance line include break and enter, motor vehicle theft, malicious damage, minor traffic crashes, lost property, scams and failure to pay.
Multicultural Community Liaison Officers
These are civilian staff employed by the police force to advise on better ways to connect with particular communities and help police address the cultural, religious and language needs of people they come in contact with. They also provide related services such as helping people report crimes, providing referrals to other agencies and delivering talks to community groups.
There are 33 MCLOs working from 25 police stations across NSW. Most speak one or more community languages and can provide basic language assistance where needed. The police also have interpreters for all languages available at any time of day or night. Find out more.
Gay and Lesbian Liaison Officers
NSW Police also employs GLLOs, originally called Gay and Lesbian Liaison Officers, who are contact officers for the gay, lesbian, gender diverse and intersex communities. They assist police to respond to homophobic incidents and work with the Bias Crimes Unit and other specialist areas. They are based in local police stations. Find out more.