Your number 1 cop shop

Mitchell's Plain Constable Thandokazi Beko interacts with a resident at the station last week.

Mitchell’s Plain police stations are upping their game by ensuring that professional and satisfactory services are delivered to residents, through their Customer is King project.

This new project is an initiative of Provincial Commissioner for the Western Cape, Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Elvis Jula (“Top cop says customer is king”, Plainsman, May 24).

According to the commissioner, the aim of the initiative is to ensure that police stations raise the bar by delivering efficient, professional and satisfactory service to residents.

Hundreds of people visit Mitchell’s Plain, Lentegeur and Strandfontein police station sdaily, for detective services, certification, to report crime or request information.

Mitchell’s Plain police station’s spokesperson, Captain Ian Williams, said it was a multi-disciplinary effort by province, the police cluster and the stations to render satisfactory service to those who turn to the police for help.

“The project should culminate in a smoother process flow and better dissemination of information of the station services.

“For example, people will be directed to the right offices faster.

“People requesting information would be able to consult with the floor manager who would be able to advise and direct,” he said.

Captain Williams added that officers would receive training in client service and telephone etiquette and that calls would be made to those who had used the police services, and victims of crime, to assess the level of service.

Information boards would also be set up and floor managers appointed to help manage the queues at the community service centres(CSCs).

This will also ensure that cases against police members were handled properly.

Managing information officer, Lieutenant Colonel Izana Viljoen, said the other strategies which would be implemented included the speedy attendance to complaints, the implementation of a dedicated desk for certification and suggestion boxes where people could deposit their service evaluations or suggestions for improvements.

Lieutenant Colonel Viljoen said the project kicked off in April and would be implemented in stages. “We have hundreds of people who either call in or walk into the police stations who have been victims of crime.

“Their first point of call are the officers at the CSCs and these front-line services are extremely important.

“This project requires every department to be up to standard and organised. For example the supply chain, making sure that the vehicles are sufficient, fixed and are running,” she said.

Lieutenant Colonel Viljoen said the stations would be monitored as members have to fill in feedback documents. “The project will also look at reaction time and will make sure that follow-up cases are being filled and documented correctly,” she said.

Lieutenant Colonel Viljoen added that domestic violence was a priority for Mitchell’s Plain police and was taken very seriously. “The police stations want to be certain that the dockets are filed and logged correctly. Management will make sure that the process is followed and that residents receive the (required) support,” she said

Mitchell’s Plain Community Police Forum (CPF) chairperson Abie Isaacs said the structure welcomed the initiative.

“Initiatives that evaluate the services of policing in Mitchell’s Plain are always good. As a policing structure, we need to fulfil our obligation to the community by ensuring that the police address the primary needs of the community and are accountable to them,” he said.

Mr Isaacs said there had been concerns about police response times, which he hoped would be addressed.

He encouraged residents to engage with the sub-forums, as well as block and street committees. “We need to work together to fight crime. The police have their strategy to combat crime, but as residents it is important that you work with police, not against. So we encourage you to report crime and be active,” he said.