Aug 22

Frontline Policing is Stretched too Thin

Surrey RCMP Barinder RasodeWe know that crime transcends geographical boundaries, and that’s why joint forces such as the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit BC and the Provincial Major Crime program play a critical role in these efforts.

For this reason, I was disheartened to learn the provincial government will be cutting $4.2M from the RCMP's budget, which will lead to a reduction of 25 officers.  I have sent a letter to Minister Anton requesting that her Ministry look at ways to cut costs in areas that won’t have an impact on frontline policing, as this will have the greatest impact on public safety.

The cuts to the organized crime section will have a particularly significant impact on Surrey, given the current level of gang violence in our city.  Deadly gang warfare continues to play itself out on our streets, and innocent families are often caught in the crossfire.  Dismantling a gang requires integrated teams and highly-specialized operations, and the Surrey RCMP simply doesn’t have the manpower to take on this role. 

Surrey already has 95% fewer officers than Vancouver, and our neighbourhoods are suffering the consequences.  Therefore, while it’s important for all governments to find efficiencies and maximize budgets, we must always ensure that frontline policing is a priority.

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