The national SupportLink referral network allows police to refer people to support services

January 24, 2013

About 12:01am last Thursday, Constable Brett Lowien of Nanango Police Station made Queensland’s 50,000th referral to SupportLink.

SupportLink is a secure web-based e-referral system which police can use to connect clients to more than 200 local, State and national registered support services.

Police are able to refer for a wide range of issues, including domestic violence, drug and alcohol abuse, crime prevention, elder abuse and neglect, victim support and counselling, road and other trauma support as well as suicide prevention and support following suicide.

The 50,000th referral was made for a female client to the Alcohol and Drug Information Service.

SupportLink Project Manager, Acting Inspector Mark Edwards said Supportlink was creating significant opportunities for police to utilise a single gateway to engage and link vulnerable individuals into appropriate external support agencies.

“The capacity for police to better utilise external agencies has a significant impact in assisting police to meet their strategic objectives,” Acting Inspector Edwards said.

“There is significant support from all levels of QPS management for the e-referral system provided by SupportLink. Statistics provide evidence of reduced calls for service in some areas because of the positive effects of the e-referral system. The positive outcomes and community benefits of using the e-referral system are also reflected in police acceptance of the system.

“SupportLink has developed ‘Engage’, a response to young people at high risk of entering or re-entering the youth justice system and for those who are ‘repeat referrals’ (referred more than twice in any six-month period).

“SupportLink works with partner agencies to wrap services around these individuals and families in an attempt to address underlying causes to offending behaviour.”.

Currently an e-referral is made on average every 11 minutes. In 2012, Queensland police officers across the State generated 36,571 e-referrals.

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