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Drouin has experienced unprecedented growth, with a 27% population increase between the 2011 and 2016 Census. The Drouin Precinct Structure Plan outlines further development that will see the town grow to 29,000 residents by 2031.
The current Police Station was built in 1970 and is no longer fit to serve the growing communities of Drouin and Longwarry. It is classed as a 16-hour station, although its actual opening hours are dependent on rostering.
The number of criminal incidents recorded in Baw Baw Shire in 2018 was 3,079, a 10% increase on the previous year’s figures and in opposition to the state-wide downward trend in criminal incidents.
Baw Baw Shire is also over-represented in family incident rates, with its rate per 100,000 population exceeding similar LGAs. A Family Violence Unit works at Warragul during dayshift, but incidents that occur outside of business hours are responded to by the only night van on the road.
Significant population growth, an increase in licensed venues and a vast geographical area means there is a tangible need for an additional night van.
A new Drouin Police Station with 24-hour capacity and additional resourcing to support a 24-hour police presence in Drouin and Longwarry.
A 24-hour Drouin Police Station would allow two night vans to respond to incidents within Baw Baw Shire.
A new station built on a greenfield site with easy access to the highway, town centre and Longwarry is preferred to allow for adequate parking and staff accommodation.
It is anticipated that Trafalgar will also need additional police resourcing in the near future.