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More than 50 % of Policing Study Recommendations Reviewed, Implemented
(Wednesday, July 16/2003)-- More than half of the recommendations contained in the consultants report on Halifax Regional policing services have been addressed or implemented in less than a year, it was announced today.
Mayor Peter Kelly; HRM Chief Administrative Officer George McLellan; Gregory North, Chair of the Halifax Regional Police Commission; Chief Frank Beazley, of Halifax Regional Police; and Superintendent Vern Fraser, Officer-In-Charge RCMP Halifax Detachment held a news conference at City Hall this morning to report on the progress of the Policing Study.
The Perivale + Taylor Report , entitled "Partners in Policing - The Halifax Regional Police Service, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Community-- Taking Care of Business" was release to the public last October. It identified 81 recommendations for review and potential implementation that could impact on the alignment and delivery of policing services to the citizens of Halifax Regional Municipality.
Mayor Kelly, on behalf of Halifax Regional Council, said today he was pleased with the progress of the review and implementation process so far, which result in great efficiencies and enhanced policing services for the citizens of HRM.
The Mayor said HRM is unique in the delivery of policing services in Canada, because that responsibility is shared by the Halifax Regional Police and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
"There is no other jurisdiction in Canada that has this policing model. We believe that the delivery of policing services between HRP and the RCMP can be seamless. The end result for our taxpayers will be elimination of any duplication in services and improved service in many communities, " he said.
CAO George McLellan said the Perivale + Taylor Report confirmed many of the areas where staff believed there could be greater cooperation and greater efficiencies between the two policing services.
Mr. McLellan said "There is no need of having two police canine units, two street drug units, two fraud units etc. HRM is one municipality and it is our responsibility to ensure that our citizens receive maximum benefit for their tax dollars. Crime and public safety knows no boundaries within HRM so policing services should know no boundaries-- geographical or otherwise" he said.
Gregory North, Chair of the Halifax Regional Police Commission, "As a citizen, I am very excited about this integration of services. When a call is made to police for assistance, we do not care about the colour of the uniform or the writing on the side of the police car. We just want help as quickly as possible. The joint commitment by the RCMP and the HRP to become a fully integrated and seamless force will enhance the delivery of policing services in a way that will hugely benefit all who live in HRM."
Chief Beazley, of Halifax Regional Police, said "This is one municipality with two police forces with a common objective to provide efficient, seamless policing to achieve our goal of making HRM the safest community possible. We will be as close to being one organization, without being one."
Supt. Fraser, the Officer in Charge of RCMP Halifax Detachment, said "I embrace the opportunity to join with Chief Beazley in leading both policing organizations into this innovative venture. The citizens of HRM will benefit significantly as a result of bringing together the strength of both agencies." In the spirit of promoting safe communities, Supt. Fraser views the integration of HRM policing services as a crucial step in fulfilling the overall HRM vision.
HRM Corporate Communications Officer
Theresa Rath Brien
Halifax Regional Police
RCMP, Halifax Detachment
Review and Implementation
The joint HRP/RCMP Project Teams met regularly and responded to 45 of the 81 Policing Study recommendations to date. There are still a number of recommendations being worked on with the Board of Police Commissioners, and a number that are being addressed through the Integrated Dispatch and Telecommunication Project (IDTP). The following is a high-level description of the responses to the recommendations:
The units agreed to were:
Integrated Major Crime Unit (Homicide)
Integrated Sexual Assault Unit
Integrated "Cold Case" Unit (Unsolved Homicides)
Integrated Internet Child Pornography Unit
Integrated Police Service Dogs/K9 Unit
Integrated Court Unit
Integrated Street Drug Unit
Integrated Fraud Unit
Integrated General Investigation Unit
Integrated High Risk Offender Unit
Integrated Vice Unit
Integrated Call Back Unit
The units involved are:Explosive Disposal Units
Emergency Response Teams
Public Safety Units
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HRM Integrated Dispatch Project
The RCMP has agreed in principle to the following as it relates to the Integrated Dispatch and Telecommunications Centre (IDTC) Project. The recommendations are still being discussed, but the following provides an overview of the current status of discussions.
Senior officials said integration of the RCMP into the IDTC Project has been ongoing and progress is being made. Representatives from the RCMP are being consulted on a wide variety of issues. The interface requirements required to complete the CAD interface are presently being researched by the RCMP and plans are in place to have the technical personnel from the RCMP and HRM meet soon regarding the issue.
Immediate Benefits of Changes: