The Mayor of Timmins wants to assure residents the current level of policing is at an acceptable level.
“Somebody has to admit that,” said Lamarche. “I think we are the first ones out of the gate.”
The police association has asked the Ontario Civilian Police Commission for help with retaining current officers in Timmins, something the mayor says she welcomes.
Michelle Boileau admits she was surprised when the information came out but isn’t ringing the alarm bells yet. She adds earlier this year council had a conversation about looking into making a switch to Ontario Provincial Police but was told by the association itself that levels were acceptable.
“Earlier this year one of our councillors had brought forward the idea of going for an OPP costing,” she says. “At that point, I met with the association who assured me we did have a handle on things.”
Boileau says she is concerned about the inner workings of the police service because the association feels the need to ask for outside assistance.
“That does indicate that at a ground level, in terms of the work environment and culture, there is some attention that has to be paid there in terms of recruiting and what the work environment is for the officers in its current state,” she says.
Boileau says she also met with the interim chief and deputy chief earlier this week and was assured the force is exceeding minimum provincial standards. However, she adds both also acknowledged the letter is an indication of frustration among the ranks.
“That’s what they really want to look hard at to do what they can to address it,” she finished.
*** story by Lee Griffi