Deb Debree

Senior Police Liaison Officer, Deb DeBree (nee Lea) is of Aboriginal, South Sea Islander and Irish Heritage.

A descendent of the Undumbi and Kalkadoon people, Deb has been a Police Liaison Officer (PLO) for the past 15 years and is widely recognised within the Brisbane community.

As a PLO, Deb provides cultural awareness and protocol advice to the Queensland Police Service and liaises between police and the local community.

"I am a go between or mediator for police and the community," Deb said.

"I enjoy working with community and assisting to break down the barriers between our people and the police.

"This is important in reducing the overrepresentation of our people in the justice system."

Deb advocates the importance of providing advice on new legislative changes to the community (once they have taken place) to ensure that families and communities across the state are aware of the potential impacts (if any) of these changes on their lives.

One of her biggest challenges since becoming a PLO was being accepted by her fellow colleagues in the Queensland Police Service due to the uniqueness of her role.

"I recall having to prove myself to both my Queensland Police Service colleagues and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community," Deb said.

Despite the challenges that come with her job, Deb loves her work and wouldn't have it any other way.

"If I am able to help effect change in one person's life, then that makes my job extremely rewarding and worthwhile," she said.

"Especially when I see someone I've worked with out in the community and they come up and acknowledge me and tell me how grateful they are for the assistance I provided to them when they needed the help."

Deb credits her parents, especially her Mum as her greatest inspiration for providing her with a good work ethic and teaching her the importance of having a good education.

Deb was recently selected as one of three female Aboriginal Police Liaison Officer's in Brisbane to appear in this years 'Black, Bold and Beautiful - 2011' calendar. The calendar recognises the significant contribution that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women make to community through their work; and hails them as the "Unsung Heroes" that they are.

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