Commissioner Ian Stewart and Police Minister Mark Ryan have presented the Adopt-a-Cop of the Year Award to Constable Stephen Armstrong of Lowood Police at an awards ceremony today, Queensland Police say.
Constable Armstrong has performed in a consultative Adopt-a-Cop role to the Fernvale State School since March 2015, and in this short time has had a profound impact on constructing positive relationships between police and the students, teachers and parents of the school community.
Adopt-a-Cop of the Year presented to Constable Stephen Armstrong by Commissioner Ian Stewart and Police Minister Mark Ryan
Officer in Charge (OIC) of Lowood Police, Senior Sergeant Troy Salton, said that the strength of Constable Armstrong’s involvement in the Fernvale school community lies in his proactive focus.
“Constable Armstrong is regularly identifying issues/trends from students and parents, and initiates the appropriate program/activity to address these issues,” Senior Sergeant Salton said.
“As an OIC, this early identification and interface within the community is essential to ensuring community relationships are nurtured within the division.”
Constable Armstrong has demonstrated his aptness through supporting ‘high risk’ students and families and addressing social and behavioural issues, supporting Indigenous students to address areas of concern, and even volunteering his time to attend a school camp.
The implementation of the “You Choose” Program in collaboration with the Justice Department was also instigated by Constable Armstrong.
The Adopt-a-Cop program was implemented by the Queensland Police Service (QPS) in 1985 to build positive relationships between police and members of the school community through the voluntary appointment of an Adopt-a-Cop.
Since 2010, the QPS has celebrated the outstanding work performed by Adopt-a-Cops through annual award programs at District, Regional and State levels.
The 15 police districts conduct Adopt-a-Cop awards and recognise these winners locally. District award winners are then nominated for their Regional Adopt-a-Cop of the Year Award.
Officers from each of the five regions were recognised at the ceremony, with Constable Armstrong nominated from the Southern Region.
All five Regional Adopt-a-Cop winners
Also awarded for his conscientious efforts was Senior Constable Wade Hastie from the Northern Region, for his consistent preparedness to achieve more than the role usually entails at the Ravenswood State School.
Inspector Grant Marcus received the award for his valuable work at St Luke’s Anglican School in the Central Region, where he has advocated a multitude of safety, education and counselling programs over his 15 years as an Adopt-a-Cop.
Senior Constable Troy Hews from the Brisbane Region received his regional award for the positive relationships he progressively developed with students at Oakleigh State School, at both a formal and in-formal level.
Constable Natalie Wilson received the Adopt-a-Cop for the South Eastern Region, where she works tirelessly at Boronia Heights State School to break down barriers that prevent positive relationships between students and the police.
Commissioner Stewart praised the efforts of all Adopt-a-Cops in schools around the state.
“The outstanding level of dedication pursued in volunteering for this program highlights the exemplary core values present in each of these officers,” Commissioner Stewart said.
“The contribution of Adopt-a-Cops is invaluable to the communities in which they serve and to the Service.”