The Community Services Unit is comprised of a Community Development Co-ordinator and four officers that focus on four different pillars: education, inclusion, opportunity and functioning families.
- The primary focus of the Unit involves school programming that includes VIP: Values, Influences and Peers program, as well as Elmer the Safety Elephant, CBC-Challenges, Beliefs and Change program, CAA Safety Patrol, and School/Community presentations based on specific requests. Our Programs are constantly being revised to ensure up-to-date information and service delivery.
- The Service’s interactions with youth are managed using a proactive and preventative approach, with the concentration being on a restorative justice perspective rather than enforcement.
- The Unit ensures that lockdown procedures are revisited in every school in case of emergency with a total of 72 lockdown drills conducted annually. Students from secondary and post secondary schools are also provided with meaningful placement where they are able to address current issues in the community.
- The Community Services Unit also manages different events in the Peterborough area during Drug Awareness week, Week without Violence, Family Week, Crime Prevention Week, and Police Week. In addition, the Community Services Unit represents the Police Service on thirteen community committees.
Our Service recognizes that the safety and wellbeing of any community can be measured by the strength and resiliency of the relationships between the people who live and work there.
In 1829 Sir Robert Peel, founder of modern policing, stated, “The police at all times should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police”. Policing is more than enforcement of the law. It is about preventing crime through building healthy, safe and secure families, relationships and communities.
The Community Services team, comprised of four officers and one civilian Community Development Coordinator, is dedicated to creating positive police experiences and creating strong and trusting partnerships. Working with youth and enhancing a strong foundation of learning in our school system is a significant part of the Community Services Officer’s role by delivering a variety of programming and educational weeks, responding to calls for service and ensuring that safety drills and threat assessments are conducted with the highest integrity and according to Ministry standards. In 2015 a total of 74 lockdown drills were conducted, with each one being led by one of our Community Services Officers.
Every school in our region has one of our four Community Services officers assigned to it. The Service’s interactions with youth are managed using a proactive and preventative approach, with the concentration being on a restorative justice perspective rather than enforcement.
The Community Services Officers are out of the police station and in the schools on a daily basis working on proactive measures and education and building relationships with the staff and students. When a call for service occurs at one of the schools it is the school officer that normally responds.
Our Community Development Coordinator, in place since 2014, helps to improve agency partnerships and collaborations as well as neighbourhood and resident engagement. We are seeing the benefits of having this position as a part of the Community Services Team in many ways, specifically in relationship building with our community partners and having a finger on the pulse of provincial trends and cutting edge and innovative projects that benefit our community as a whole.
In addition, the Community Services Unit represents the Police Service on 13 community committees. All of the programs and community partnerships formed by this Unit aim to build resilience, empathy and compassion. We recognize that preventing crime cannot be achieved by working in isolation. Each year we continue to build on our community partnerships to address the social determinants of health, including safe and secure housing, healthy families, poverty reduction, addictions and employment security.