A non-emergency police phone line trialled in Brimbank earlier this year is now operating statewide.
The 24-hour line will take calls about non-urgent matters such as property damage, theft, noise complaints and lost property, freeing up triple-0 callers.
People can access the line by calling 131 444.
The line is staffed by civilian call-takers at a Ballarat contact centre, under the supervision of police officers.
The line was trialled in Brimbank, Hume and Ballarat earlier this year.
Victoria Police acting chief commissioner Shane Patton said more than 70,000 calls had been made to the police assistance line since the trial began in February.
He said the trial had helped police refine the call process ahead of the statewide roll out. An online reporting portal has also been created.
Acting Chief Commissioner Patton said the additional channels should improve the community’s access to police.
“These new avenues of contact to Victoria Police will be available 24/7, making it easier for the community to engage with police for non-emergency help, advice and support,” he said.
“These new channels will also reduce the amount of time police spend taking reports on non-urgent crimes, and will improve the way we prioritise and respond to these matters.”
According to police, almost 30 per cent of calls to triple-0 are for non-urgent matters.
“The triple-0 number for police, fire and ambulance remains and should be used if immediate attendance from these agencies is critical such as a threat to life or a crime occurring,” Acting Chief Commissioner Patton said.
Police will launch a 12-month advertising campaign to alert people to the assistance line.
The online reporting portal can be accessed via police.vic.gov.au/palolr