Vancouver Police New Community Safety Personnel Program

Reposted from Vancouver Media Coop: 

http://vancouver.mediacoop.ca/blog/indyvan/21117

From the VPD Swine’s Website:

COMMUNITY SAFETY PROGRAM

“The Vancouver Police Community Safety Program is a three-year pilot project, running from 2013 to 2016. The Community Safety Unit is comprised of 42 special constables (20 full-time and 22 auxiliary members), one staff sergeant, two sergeants and one constable.”

Community Safety members are distinct and separate from regular police members, and they are considered to be a unique element of the police department. The primary purpose of Community Safety personnel is to assist the Vancouver Police Department and enhance service delivery in the community by:

  • assisting with lower-level, lower-risk tasks, as directed, to alleviate regular police officers from such tasks, thereby providing regular police officers with more capacity to serve the community and to maintain high visibility while patrolling neighbourhoods
  • assisting the Vancouver Police Department at community and public events by providing a visible presence to the community, to promote safety and security, where the presence of a regular police officer is not required
  • acting as a liaison between regular police officers and the community, as appropriate, to ensure the Vancouver Police Department continues to effectively serve citizens in Vancouver
  • assisting police officers in order to maximize their available proactive policing time

HISTORY OF SPECIAL CONSTABLES

From Wikipedia:

“Special Constables were used extensively in Canada prior to the Second World War to quell labour unrest. After the war, industrial relations became far less militant and many of the larger urban police forces created permanent auxiliary units.

The most notorious use of Special Constables in Canadian history was during the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919. The entire Winnipeg police force was dismissed because its members refused to sign an anti-union pledge and was replaced by a much larger and better paid force of untrained Special Constables explicitly to end the strike and the police union.”

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