'Worst' west Auckland train station has improved, police say
The Ranui train station is not as bad as people think, police say.
Said to be one of the "worst" stations out west, Ranui train station has had seven reported incidents of assault and harassment, including two incidents with Auckland Transport staff and contractors.
In June, a woman posted on social media about her husband's assault by three "hood rats" which saw some residents rally together to make the station a welcoming space in the evenings.
The social media post on June 12 generated a lot of comments, among them that Ranui was not "the nicest train station". One social media user said she purposely caught the train from another station because "Ranui station creeps me [out]".
One of its recent high profile cases was a brawl involving young girls in November last year, when five teenage girls were filmed attacking another girl.
However, Sergeant Keki Wilson of the Ranui Neighbourhood Policing Team said the train station has never been safer.
He's been a part of the Ranui group since August last year, and said he's seen a vast improvement of safety at the station.
"I don't have people coming up to me saying that they don't feel safe," Wilson said.
He said he's "surprised" people have said the Ranui station was one of the worst.
"I've visited a number of stations on the western line and Ranui is actually pretty good to me."
He said police were happy to talk to concerned members of the public about that perspective.
If people had concerns over their safety on the platform, or knew of assaults and harassments, they needed to contact police, Wilson said.
"If they don't tell us, then we don't know.
"The adage about policing by consent of the community is true, so it's basically what they allow us to know as well."
He said security measures at the station has improved with CCTV cameras on the platform and daily patrol by his team.
Tagging of the station's toilets and nearby shops which used to create a "sense of fear" had also stopped.
This was mainly because of the work police were doing with the local community groups, he said.
"What we don't lack in Ranui is people that actually care about the community.
"And what we do encourage is that people join the pre existing groups that are already there because most groups have quite limited resources and if we can get people working together and on the same page, then we can be more effective and deploy those resources."