Police owe about $40 million to current and former staff due to a payroll bungle that has been ongoing since 2009.
A source said some staff were owed close to $10,000 each but many were not even aware they had been shortchanged until recently.
Concern was rife among those who did know that to pay staff what they were owed, funds would have to be pulled from crucial areas of policing.
“Every employee over the last few years would potentially have been affected by the pay blunder,” the source said.
“Obviously only some street police staff are aware of this … To fund this, police have to find it within their existing budget meaning some services to the public may be affected.”
There are 12,000 constabulary and non-sworn police employees.
Fiona Michel, deputy chief executive of people at Police National Headquarters could not say how many were affected or exactly how much they were owed.
“It is too early to confirm the exact numbers of staff affected, the range of payments to be made or the total sum to be paid to current and/or former staff,” she said.
“Our first priority is to inform those affected staff of their entitlements before other parties. Police can confirm that the historic issues involve a significant amount of staff and money. However, to put the issue into context, the remediation total will be less than one fortnightly pay run.”
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