Local police forces heading for a shake-up. | R.L.

Catalina Cladera, who in addition to being the regional finance minister is also responsible for public administration, said in parliament yesterday that the current model of local police forces in the Balearics is not responding to the needs of the public. She said that it was necessary to create more stable staffing, which would involve a change to the model and to the form of entry into local forces.

She stressed that the public administration ministry will ensure the public's security and that one of the challenges is to improve the local police model. She was responding to a question from the Partido Popular, which she criticised for having spent four years in government without having addressed the problem.

"We do not wish to continue with the model that you left us with," she said, adding that staffing levels were currently quite low and will present problems in the summer. The ministry is at present quantifying the demand for police that town halls have and talking with police forces in order to define a model that will bring the police closer to the public and that will also resolve a problem with temporary staffing. Entry courses are also being evaluated as these have created more problems.

Nuria Riera for the PP (and a former public administration minister) suggested that if courses and training were to be lengthened, there would be people who wanted to become police officers who would choose not to. "It's true that the model needs modernising, but opportunities need to be given to those people who want to work."

In the meantime, the local police force in Palma is still being investigated for cases of corruption, especially in Playa de Palma.