Wed, Nov 08, 2017 - Page 3 News List

NPP lawmaker backs police call for end to quotas

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

New Power Party Legislator Hsu Yung-ming, right, yesterday speaks at a news conference in Taipei, with police officer Max Shih, left.

Photo: Huang Yao-cheng, Taipei Times

New Power Party (NPP) Legislator Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明) yesterday voiced his support for a proposal by police unions that would abolish a quota system which they say forces police officers to work overtime and has led to an artificial inflation of criminal reports.

The National Police Agency (NPA) has long relied on a quota system imposed on local police stations for the number of cases involving drunk driving, traffic violations, drug busts, burglaries, sex-related crimes and other offenses they are expected to report, forcing many officers to work overtime to meet their quotas, Hsu said.

“The quotas are imposed from the top and most of the numbers are very unrealistic. In some districts, the quotas have increased annually. This has resulted in many complaints, especially among regular police officers who go on patrol. The extra workload to meet the quotas has resulted in physical exhaustion and has affected officers’ health,” Hsu said.

Officer Max Shih (石明謹), who works in the traffic division at Taipei’s Wanhua District (萬華) precinct and also as a TV sports pundit, cited examples from his own job and those of his fellow officers.

“Some officers had to catch 24 drunk drivers on their beat permonth. If they failed, they had to continue patrol and traffic checks to meet their quota,” he said.

“In one case, an officer had already met his quota when he caught three more drunk drivers in one night. He kept it under wraps and reported them the following month,” Shih said.

Taiwan Police Union executive Kuo Li-hsuan (郭歷軒) said that another major problem is chiefs and supervisors base annual performance evaluations on the monthly quota system and punish officers who fail to meet their quotas.

In some cases, officers arresting suspects for crimes such as firearms possession would tag on other offenses to boost their evaluations, he said.

Criminal investigation Bureau section chief Kuang Ching-tai (鄺慶泰) said that the NPA officials have launched a review to monitor the effectiveness of the quota system and the year-end performance evaluation, and have steadily reduced the quotas for criminal cases and other offenses.

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