A SENIOR police officer who created a template for the force to proactively address domestic violence and who co-ordinates leadership forums for up-and-coming officers has been awarded the Australian Police Medal.
Port Stephens local area commander Superintendent Craig Rae was one of eight NSW police officers to be recognised in the Queen’s birthday honours list released yesterday.
While the Lake Macquarie local area commander, Superintendent Rae introduced reforms in his own command to put more offenders on charges.
These included setting up a domestic violence unit with officers checking that identified high-risk offenders were abiding by court orders.
It also allowed officers to identify breaches before more violence took place, often behind closed doors and without being reported to authorities.
The unit also had dedicated officers to connect victims with relevant services.
The reforms worked so well they have been adopted by local area commanders across the state.
Superintendent Rae has been a White Ribbon Day ambassador for the past four years, was the chairman of the Hunter Region Domestic Violence Taskforce and is still a member of the Hunter White Ribbon Day committee.
He joined the police as a trainee in 1985.
He was also recognised for his work in promoting forums for officers wanting to develop leadership skills.
‘‘It is very humbling to be recognised for something like this,’’ Superintendent Rae said.
‘‘I think it is important to recognise that throughout the last 29 years I have learnt a lot from all people around me, not just the senior people.
‘‘Every day you can learn something from a constable, from anyone I work with.
‘‘I think that is important.’’