29 November 2013
(Community Recognition Statement, 1pm 28 November 2013, Legislative Assembly, NSW Parliament)
I commend the skill and expertise of the two City of Sydney public space liaison officers, who work with rough sleepers, street drinkers and others in the public domain.
These officers address community concerns about antisocial behaviour, link homeless people with outreach services and negotiate agreements that prevent impacts on safety and amenity. By building good relationships with all parties, these officers prevent the need for police or other intervention, reduce conflict and help people get back on their feet. This requires special attributes including empathy, creativity, personal initiative and a good dose of common sense. They have no formal authority and rely on their ingenuity to achieve positive results, which I regularly hear about their work. These officers are part of the City of Sydney's Homelessness Unit. I recognise their contribution to helping address an ongoing concern in all big cities across the world.