This annual performance statement shows that the AFP was successful in meeting its purpose in 2019–20. We achieved excellent results against a backdrop of the commencement of a new Commissioner and the need for our involvement in responses to several natural emergencies. Overall, in 2019–20 the AFP achieved most of its performance criteria (refer to Table 3.3 Performance criteria in the 2019–20 PBS (Portfolio Additional Estimates Statement (PAES) 2019–20)). Figure 3.2 illustrates the range of performance results for a particular crime (drug importation), showing the comprehensive and diverse ways the AFP combats and reports on this work though its quantitative performance measures. Two were not met: community confidence and the prosecution acceptance rate. However, we note that there were clear improvements in the community confidence result and we just missed the target for the prosecution acceptance rate.
In the summer of 2019–2020, large parts of Australia were affected by devastating bushfires, hazardous smoke, storms and heatwaves. In early 2020, we also faced the unexpected outbreak of the COVID‑19 pandemic. AFP members were involved in supporting other services and doing non-routine work during the period.
More generally, the COVID-19 emergency required the AFP to develop strategies to manage staff health. For example, there was a need to organise personal protective equipment for staff; our operational teams worked split shifts or remotely; and unsworn staff worked from home. Police duties, including investigations, were influenced by travel restrictions and redeployments to COVID‑19 tasks. There were changes in demand and altered criminal activity as movement of goods and people slowed. Fortunately, few AFP members contracted COVID‑19. Despite facing many new challenges in a changing and unpredictable environment, the AFP was able to maintain its usual operations during the last quarter, showing its resilience and its ability to adjust and continue to work.