[TPS] – Toronto Police Service Places Neighbourhood Policing at the Core of Community Safety, Pilot Launch of Enhanced Neighbourhood Officer Program

Toronto Police Service
News Release

Toronto Police Service Places Neighbourhood Policing at the Core of Community Safety, Pilot Launch of Enhanced Neighbourhood Officer Program

Monday, October 1, 2018 – 5:00 AM
Community Partnerships and Engagement Unit
416-808-0100

Today, the Toronto Police Service is launching a six-month pilot of an enhanced Neighbourhood Officer Program in eight City of Toronto neighbourhoods located in 11, 22, 41, and 42 Divisions.

The Service has had Neighbourhood Officers since 2013 with 96 Police Constables deployed in 33 neighbourhoods across Toronto. Over the past five years, relationships in these neighbourhoods have improved, levels of trust have increased, and there has been an improved understanding of the policing needs within these communities due to the presence of Neighbourhood Officers.

The launch of the pilot demonstrates the Service’s continued commitment to the Neighbourhood Officer Program. A number of enhancements will be added to the current program and then evaluated during the pilot. Some of these enhancements include:

• A standard role profile which describes the Neighbourhood Officer mandate and key accountabilities;
• Standardized training for Neighbourhood Officers;
• A defined term of four years in the neighbourhood;
• A work schedule with flexible start times to meet the needs of the community;
• Provision of Connected Officer devices (smartphones); and,
• Increased visibility of Neighbourhood Officers using marked vehicles, ball caps, and vest flaps.

“The Neighbourhood Officer program speaks to and supports each of our modernization goals and our Service. Establishing a more visible and consistent police presence in neighbourhoods is what and where the public has asked for us to be,” commented Toronto Chief of Police, Mark Saunders. “Working collaboratively with residents, community groups, and City partners will mean that together, the Neighbourhood Officers and residents can utilize various partners to help solve issues and problems before they escalate.”

Chief Saunders further added, “Having Neighbourhood Officers consistently present will lead to increased trust and confidence in our Service which will help us either manage issues before they arise, or be able to quickly resolve them. Preventing issues from escalating is important to all of us.”

At the conclusion of the pilot, the information and experiences from participants and stakeholders will be evaluated to make sure when the enhanced program is deployed in various locations in Toronto in 2019 and 2020, it will meet the expectations of the communities and the Neighbourhood Officers.

About the Action Plan: The Way Forward
Mandated to look beyond the way policing is currently done in Toronto; the Transformational Task Force (TTF) proposed a modernized policing model for the city that is innovative, sustainable, and affordable. The final report – Action Plan: The Way Forward – was accepted by the Toronto Police Services Board in February 2017, as the Service’s Business Plan for the next 3 years. The Toronto Police Service is now implementing this modernization plan. The new model places communities at its core, be intelligence-led, optimize the use of resources and technology, and embrace partnerships as a means of enhancing capacity and capability.

To read more about this and the entire Action Plan: The Way Forward, Click here.
For more information, please contact Sandra Buckler at Sandra.Buckler@torontopolice.on.ca

For more news, visit TPSnews.ca.

Meaghan Gray, Corporate Communications

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