The needs of the community are being investigated by the Prince Rupert RCMP and they want to hear the public’s voice to better determine the allocation of resources.
More than 50 responses have been received to the policing needs survey launched on Feb. 17 on the RCMP’s website and they are looking for more.
“This is the opportunity for the citizens on a grander scale to provide their concerns and feedback and have a say in how we move forward,” Sgt. Gerald Walker, officer in charge of the Prince Rupert detachment, told The Northern View on Feb. 23.
“As part of planning for the 2023-2024 year, the Prince Rupert RCMP has drafted a short survey to get an overall view of what the municipality sees as the important issues.”
Walker said one of his priorities is to understand the concerns of the community and where services are needed. Some of what he has been hearing, in general, is the public wants increased visibility of police presence.
“As partners in the community, you will agree that we must understand what the community feels is important when establishing the policing priorities,” the OIC said.
“This is the first time I have been able to prepare the detachment annual performance plan since becoming the Detachment Commander, and I want to make sure the community is given a chance to provide their feedback.”
Previously in Prince Rupert, priorities have been determined with input from city hall, consultative groups and Indigenous engagement groups.
“There are different approaches that can be taken. This is trying a different avenue that can hopefully give every citizen a voice.”
Walker would love for everyone in Prince Rupert to fill out the survey.
“I encourage and hope that as many Prince Rupert citizens will complete the survey, which will only take about five minutes. It will … make a difference in how we can serve you better.”
The number of surveys returned so far is lower than expected and that’s concerning to the organization.
“This is way below the anticipated return and it cannot accurately depict an overall picture of the community’s expectations from their police service. [We are] hoping that [the public] would be willing to share the survey and its importance through [their] various platforms in an effort to boost the participation level,” an email from the detachment stated.
By the public sharing the survey, it will help the police help more people. It will give Prince Rupert RCMP senior management team a better understanding of the population’s wants and needs, he said.
Walker has used surveys in the past in other detachments to garner information, which resulted in valuable feedback to establish priorities. A follow-up survey was then completed the next year as a further assessment.
The poll on https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/K3N86WF is open until Feb. 28, when the data will be reviewed. Walker said there will be more community engagement to follow.
K-J Millar | Editor and Multimedia Journalist
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