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 13 community committees.
In 2016 officers conducted a total of 76 lockdown drills in elementary and secondary schools.
The Service’s interactions with local youth are managed using a proactive and preventative approach, with the concentration being on a restorative justice perspective rather than enforcement. In late 2015 early 2016 Community Services officers introduced the Knowledge, Issues, Decisions and Supports (KIDS) programming in our local schools with this cutting-edge program being well received.
Our officers also delivered the Challenges, Beliefs and Change (CBC) Program, a peer-mentored classroom session on drug use and decision making delivered to grade 8 classrooms.
Community Services officers also tailored presentations to schools for specific requests with topics including healthy relationships, anti-bullying, internet and cellphone safety, legal issues and drug awareness.
The Peterborough community continues to grow and welcome newcomers from around the world. In 2016 Community Services officers attended the New Canadians Centre on many occasions to speak with new Canadians about the role of police in Ontario and how to navigate policing in Peterborough.
A number of events to build community and provide crime prevention education were led by the Unit in 2016 including: Coffee and Cops outreach events in Peterborough, Lakefield and Cavan Monaghan; Drug Awareness Week with local partners focusing on prescription take-back messaging; Crime Prevention Week and Police Week.
In addition, the Community Development Coordinator is responsible for the development and coordination of strategic community engagement and partnership approaches to build and enhance relationships between the Service and community stakeholders.
Throughout 2016 the Community Developement Coordinator worked closely with a number of community partners and stakeholders on a variety of projects and was instrumental in securing grant monies which have allowed us to lead various training initiatives. Through grant monies secured in 2017 our staff will be able to participate in sexual violence and harassment training.
During International Day of Pink the Police Service revealed gender neutral washrooms inside the station which was led by the Community Development Coordinator.
All of the programs and community partnerships formed by this Unit aim at building resilience, empathy and compassion.