27 Mar 2013

Top officer defends pace for improving police conduct

11:19 pm on 27 March 2013

Police Commissioner Peter Marshall has defended the pace of change for improving police conduct, five years after a commission of inquiry into the matter.

A progress report has found just seven of the 47 recommendations have been fully implemented.

The Auditor-General's office says there has been poor progress in police services for adult sexual assault complaints.

Following accusations by Louise Nicholas, and the jailing of officers for raping a woman in Bay of Plenty in 1989, major changes were recommended to police handling of sexual assault complaints.

Mr Marshall appeared before Parliament's law and order committee on Wednesday to respond to the third monitoring report since the inquiry.

He said more work had been done since the report, and any officer who might be in a position to investigate sexual assaults had received training.

Mr Marshall said there was also earlier intervention for officers experiencing personal or work problems and a lot of progress had been made on the code of conduct and disciplinary processes.

Police Minister Anne Tolley is defending the rate of progress, saying it was never something that was going to be put in place quickly.

She says it's a long-term project that is being constantly watched.