TORONTO – Ontario police services are getting more resources to prevent gun and gang violence in their communities and make local neighbourhoods a safer place to live, work and play. “The Ontario Government’s commitment to PAVIS funding allows police services to effectively target criminals and to remove guns from our communities. The strategy helps increase community safety by involving citizens in efforts to rid Ontario neighbourhoods of gang activity and drug dealing.” comments Bob Herman, Chief of Police and President of the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police.
Through the Provincial Anti-Violence Intervention Strategy (PAVIS), Ontario will provide 17 police services with a 41 percent funding increase to support specialized teams that root out gangs and stop violent crime in its tracks. Modeled after the Toronto Anti-Violence Intervention Strategy (TAVIS), local PAVIS projects are already working to make Ontario’s communities safer. Since 2007, these initiatives have led to more than 1,100 arrests, 2,000 criminal charges laid, and the removal of 200 illegal firearms.
“Making our communities safer is working – guns and gangs activity and other violent crimes have declined since 2003. Our dedicated police force risk everything to ensure that 13 million Ontarians have safe communities to live and learn,” commented Jim Bradley, the Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services.
“We are committed to combating guns and gangs across this province, vigorously prosecuting charges, and working collaboratively with law enforcement, justice and community partners to make our neighbourhoods safer,” added Chris Bentley, Ontario’s Attorney General who is responsible for overseeing the administration of the Police Services Act.