The appointment of the current Police Commissioner to the ARL Commission presents a clear conflict of interest for the highly paid public servant who manages one of the world’s largest police forces. It is a fact that NRL players regularly come “to the attention of” NSW Police and as the Curtis Scott case demonstrates, the interaction between police and NRL players can often be confrontational.
Mr Fuller spruiked his credentials for the role saying “I’m an expert in employment, people management, brand management and setting behavioural expectations” – members of the public subject to one of the increasing numbers of arbitrary strip searches by police on his watch would beg to differ.
Greens MP and Justice spokesperson David Shoebridge said:
“Last time I looked, the $650,000 job of NSW Police Commissioner was a full-time role.
“It’s not too much to expect that one of the most highly paid public servants in the country focuses 100% of his attention on his job rather than profile-building side hustles.
“How did the Premier not realise this is a man who already has a full-time job and the obvious conflicts of interest in oversight of the NRL whose players regularly come to the notice of police.
“The recent Curtis Scott case shows just how fraught such an appointment would be with a serious police assault against an NRL player who is still suing the police for damages.
“It’s unclear why the Premier thought it would be appropriate to support this appointment given the clear conflict of interest.
“There’s a long recognised need to engage in culture change within the NRL and bringing in a police officer is exactly the wrong direction for the organisation.
“As has been shown in repeated reports by the police watchdog there is a pressing need for cultural change within the police force and if the Commissioner is keen to show his leadership then he should focus his highly paid energies there,” Mr Shoebridge said.