(L to R: Ottawa Deputy Police Chief Steve Bell, Carleton MPP Goldie Gharmari and Ottawa Police Association President Matt Skoff at announcement for major investment to community policing on December 17, 2019. Photo: Ottawa Police Association.)
The Ontario Government is providing resources needed to keep our communities safe and tackle crime. The funds will be distributed over a three-year period. Today, Carleton MPP Goldie Gharmari announced that the Ottawa Police Service will receive $13.8M to strengthen their community policing programs. This is over and above the previous funds provided to the Guns and Gangs Unit.
The new funds will provide the Ottawa Police the funds necessary to position resources and tools to facilitate the deployment of frontline officers where and when they are needed most, while supporting policing initiatives that focus on local priorities such as community policing and more police presence in rural Ottawa. Currently, only ten full-time community officers cover the Ottawa area.
“This support will play a crucial role in strengthening community safety in Ottawa, including rural Ottawa, while at the same time supporting our hard-working frontline officers,” said MPP Goldie Ghamari.
“Our government is addressing the concerns of our community,” said MPP Ghamari. “That’s why we believe in putting resources directly into the hands of the Ottawa Police Service. They are the experts in maintaining public safety and our primary partner in keeping Ottawa’s communities safe.”
An additional $52,786.24 in funding for the Ottawa Police Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere RIDE Grant will help identify impaired drivers and keep our streets and highways safe.
(Photo: Ottawa Police RIDE campaign)
“With this funding, our local police service will be able to conduct regular roadside spot-checks and education campaigns needed to detect impaired drivers and keep our roads safe,” said MPP Ghamari. “It will help pay for cover sworn officers’ overtime and paid duty RIDE activities, and that’s really important.”
In the last decade in Ontario, more than 1,700 lives have been lost and over 25,000 people injured in collisions involving an impaired driver. With the legalization of recreational cannabis last year, roadside spot-checks have proven even more crucial.
Impaired drivers will face penalties immediately. They may also face additional consequences later if they are convicted in court. Impaired driving penalties can vary depending on the driver’s age, licence type, the amount of alcohol or drugs in their system, and how many times they have been convicted.
The Ottawa Police must report annually to account for the received funds.