Alberta Sheriffs Partner With Calgary Police

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City of Calgary in winter - image - Depositphotos.com
City of Calgary in winter - image - Depositphotos.com

Calgary – Making downtown Calgary safer is the goal of a pilot program with the Calgary Police Service and the Alberta Sheriffs

The Alberta Sheriffs and the Calgary Police Service (CPS) are expanding their partnership to help prevent and respond to crime and social disorder. A 12-week pilot program was recently announced, which will begin in late February, assigning 12 sheriffs to work with CPS beat and bike teams deployed in the downtown core.

The goal of this expanded partnership is to not only deter crime, but to also increase public safety and help connect vulnerable Albertans to the necessary supports and resources. By boosting police presence in inner-city neighbourhoods, officers have more opportunities to engage and respond to community concerns, while treating mental health and addiction as health-care issues.

Mike Ellis, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Services, stated that “people in Calgary deserve to feel safe in their homes and in the places where they work and visit.” Nicholas Milliken, Minister of Mental Health and Addiction, also highlighted the importance of police services in implementing recovery-oriented systems of care, noting that “with the ongoing roll out of the HealthIM digital tool, and with the Calgary Police Service and Alberta Sheriffs working together to support vulnerable Calgarians, we can continue to treat mental health and addiction as health-care issues while keeping our communities safe.”

Mark Neufeld, Chief Constable of the Calgary Police Service, said that the CPS beat and bike teams “want to ensure our downtown is a welcoming place for all and that people feel safe and supported while travelling in and around our city.” Meanwhile, Farooq Sheikh, Chief of the Alberta Sheriffs, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership, noting that “members of the Alberta Sheriffs chose a career in law enforcement out of a desire to serve and protect the community”, and that they are looking forward to “bring[ing] a reassuring and visible presence to people in the city.”

This new initiative is part of a broader effort to address complex issues such as crime, homelessness, addiction and mental health, while keeping communities safe. By utilizing alternatives to enforcement and responding to community concerns, this expanded collaboration between the Alberta Sheriffs and the Calgary Police Service will create a more secure and welcoming environment for everyone.

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