Group hopes to keep RCMP in Alberta to hold community engagement sessions

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Red Deer – January 31
Rocky Mountain House – January 31
Stettler – February 1
Hanna – February 1
Drumheller – February 2
Olds – February 2

Virtual appointments are also hosted:

January 27, 2022 – 6:30 p.m. MT

February 3, 2022 – 6:30 p.m. MT

As recently as November, Premier Jason Kenney spoke at the Alberta Rural Municipalities Conference, imploring rural leaders to consider the merits of a provincial police force.

He also promised that the additional costs would not be transferred directly to the municipalities.

The report projected that it would cost hundreds of millions of dollars more in start-up and operating costs for Alberta to go it alone on policing, but there could be a service more profitable in the end.

rdnewsNOW contacted Alberta Justice for an update, its response indicating that virtual stakeholder engagement sessions were held in November and December. About 70 more are planned starting this month, with more than 370 municipalities, 48 ​​First Nations and eight Métis settlements invited.

“The dialogue taking place here in Alberta is part of a growing national conversation about the future of the RCMP in contract policing. At the provincial level, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Saskatchewan are examining the feasibility of a provincial police service to replace the RCMP,” said Jason van Rassel, Communications Advisor for the Department of Justice. “In addition to Surrey, BC’s decision to replace the RCMP with a municipal police service, several municipalities in the Maritimes are also exploring this idea.

The judge’s statement continues with van Rassel pointing out that at the federal level, a House of Commons committee released a report in June 2021 that looked at systemic racism in policing in Canada.

“One of the committee’s findings was that the contract policing role of the RCMP makes it difficult for the organization to focus on community policing across the country and to provide effective federal policing. the same time. The committee recommended that the federal government explore the possibility of ending RCMP contract policing and work with provinces, territories and municipalities that wish to establish their own police departments,” van Rassel said.

“The federal government has also highlighted many systemic challenges to the sustainability of RCMP contract policing, and the Prime Minister’s recent mandate letter to Canada’s Minister of Public Safety includes a directive to review RCMP contract police in consultation with provinces, territories and Indigenous communities. Given the federal government’s pointed questions about the RCMP’s ability to fulfill its policing mandate, it is all the more prudent for Alberta to undertake this exercise now.

The Transition Study, Continuing Stakeholder Engagement and Online Public Survey will soon be launched, if they haven’t already, each aiming to answer the question of whether it is This is a worthwhile investment for Alberta, concludes van Rassel.

For more information on the KeepAlbertaRCMP campaign, visit www.keepalbertarcmp.ca.

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