Neighbourhood Watch Bulletin for 2020-11-04

This week’s topics:

  • Highlights of the OPS 2021 Draft Operating and Capital Budget.
  • Crime Prevention Ottawa awards.
  • Police Reporting Unit hours.
  • New Neighbourhood Resource Team in Centretown.


If you’re interested in helping out, see our Neighbourhood Watch Page.

– Alex

—– Forwarded Message —–
Subject: Neighbourhood Watch Bulletin for November 4, 2020
Date: Wed, 4 Nov 2020 14:11:45 -0500
From: Darren Joseph <wellingtoncpc@gmail.com>

1.  Highlights of the OPS 2021 Draft Operating and Capital Budget

The Ottawa Police Service (OPS) tabled its 2021 Draft Operating and Capital Budget with the Ottawa Police Services Board (OPSB) at a special meeting of the OPSB this morning.

“Our members proudly serve the residents of this city and we have heard the calls for change. This budget responds to those calls. We are listening and learning and we have produced a budget designed to move policing forward while continuing to provide the services our residents need now and in the future,” said Chief Peter Sloly.

The 2021 Draft Budget is focused on ensuring that our community can see and experience its return on investment in policing including improved public safety, social change and community building.

“The Ottawa Police Service Board has spoken openly about the need to bring meaningful change to the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) and I believe the 2021 Draft Operating and Capital Budget shows a commitment to that work” said Coun. Diane Deans, Chair of the Ottawa Police Services Board. “The budget was developed to answer the calls of the community and deliver the Board’s Strategic Priorities for OPS. It includes investments in Neighbourhood Policing, Mental Health Services, Outreach Recruiting and Hiring, Addressing Violence Against Women, Training and Development, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and Member Health & Wellness and by advancing our work in these areas we will ultimately grow a Service that best reflects the needs our of City”

Draft 2021 Budget highlights:

Mental Health Response Strategy: Through consultation and partnership with the community, the OPS will develop and implement a multi-year strategy focused on better coordination and access to community health mental health services, as well as improving our overall response to calls for service where mental health is an issue. This includes increasing training for all members, improving our initial response, building networks with community partners to ensure people get the appropriate help they need, and introducing and increasing mental health professional capacity on-site and in the 911 communications centre. We will work with community partners to develop this model and increase mental health training for all communication centre staff.

Neighbourhood Resource Teams: We will continue to make investments in our community policing model to reach across the City of Ottawa. Additional Neighbourhood Resource Teams (NRT) will be deployed in suburban neighbourhoods, and an investment in Community Policing Officers. Six NRTs currently exist in our urban areas. The 2021 Budget will include 20 new permanent officers for NRT’s and five Community Police Officers. It will allow our service to continue to build better community partnerships and work with local residents to focus on solving crime and social disorder at a neighbourhood level.

Training/Equity, Diversity and Inclusion: There will be an increased focus on organizational training and the roll out the EDI training tool kit that will focus on Mental Health, Intersectionality and Anti-Indigenous / Anti-Black Racism. By enhancing the awareness of all members we will promote trust in policing and further develop an internal culture that actively promotes equity, diversity and inclusion.

Violence Against Women: Five new investigators will be added our Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Section and our Partner Assault Section. Two of these positions will be focused on improving coordination of violence against women services and initiatives with our community partners and a special focus on serving our Indigenous community.

Increased Member supports: There will be a significant investment in our Wellness Section including four new positions focused on improving the overall health and wellness of our members. We have also developed a third party process for all types of harassment including sexual harassment.

Budget Financial Highlights

The projected net operating budget for the OPS will be $332.5 million on a gross operating budget of $376.4 million with a police tax rate increase of 3%.

This is a net incremental operating budget increase of $13.2 million over 2020. With the assessment growth assumption of 1.5%, the budget results in a net increase to the police tax bill rate of $19 per year for the average household.

Efficiencies

The Budget also identifies $2.7 million efficiencies and savings through internal administrative service improvements and realignments as well as the Back Office Integration Initiative. That Initiative is working to share City of Ottawa administrative services as well as leveraging shared technologies. Since 2012, OPS has generated $20M in efficiencies, which represent 6% of the 2021 Net Operating Budget.

Have your say…

The Ottawa Police Service wants to hear from residents and businesses about their thoughts on the 2021 Budget.

Public delegations and questions from Ottawa City Councillors are welcome at the November 9, 2020, Finance and Audit Committee meeting starting at 1:00 p.m. via Zoom at the following link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86403224622.

Comments will also be welcome at the beginning of the regular meeting of the OPSB on November 23, 2020, that will start at 2:00 p.m. (via Zoom – link to be announced by OPSB).

The Ottawa Police 2021 Budget is scheduled for approval by the Board on November 23, 2020 and by Ottawa City Council on December 9, 2020.

A complete copy of the Ottawa Police Service 2021 Draft Operating and Capital Budget is available for viewing or downloading from ottawapolice.ca/reports. As well, it can be requested through info@ottawapolice.ca.

2.  Crime Prevention Ottawa awards

Crime Prevention Ottawa is pleased to announce the winners of the 12th annual Crime Prevention Ottawa Awards. The awards recognize the people, groups and programs that have made a difference in preventing crime and making communities safer across the city.

For the first time ever, we have moved the awards fully online in response to the physical distancing measures in place during COVID-19. The six winners will be acknowledged live at the online Crime Prevention Ottawa Awards today, Monday, November 2, 2020, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. To watch the awards, visit our livestream on YouTube.

The award winners are:

  • Outstanding Agency Award – Ottawa Victim Services
  • Community Program Award –Next Chapter Program – youturn
  • Innovation Award – ABLE2 Fetal Alcohol Resource Program
  • Leadership Award – Amber Montgomery
  • Youth Leadership Award –Ethno-cultural Youth Advisory Committee – Youth Services Bureau
  • Police Professional Award – Cst. Sebastien Lemay

The attached fact sheet provides information on each of our award winners.

The media and the public are invited to join us from the safety of their homes for this special occasion. Please join us online to hear inspiring stories about incredible people in our city who give back to create safer communities. Award winners are available for interviews.

For more information about the Crime Prevention Ottawa Awards and our many valuable initiatives, please visit crimepreventionottawa.ca.

Profiles of the 2020 Crime Prevention Ottawa Award Winners

Outstanding Agency Award – Ottawa Victim Services
Ottawa Victim Services (OVS) provides emotional support, practical assistance, referrals, and advocacy to victims of crime or tragic circumstances.  OVS refers clients to other community programs that offer complementary services like food and housing. This lets clients maintain their independence and become more self-sufficient, which can help stop cycles of abuse. OVS helps Indigenous clients who have been victimized due to generational trauma and addictions. They provide financial and emotional support to help heal victims of human trafficking.

During COVID-19, OVS partnered with community agencies to develop Unsafe at Home Ottawa, an online text and chat service available to help women and members of LGBTQ2S+ communities who are living with domestic violence. The team at Ottawa Victim Services works relentlessly to help clients leave abusive situations. They have created an innovative, non-judgemental space to support members of our community when they need it most.

Community Program Award – Next Chapter Program – youturn
The Next Chapter Program connects vulnerable, marginalized youth with important community supports like healthcare, mental health support, and financial assistance. Run by youturn, Next Chapter is free and open to all gender expressions and all ages. The program’s counsellors consider each client’s unique needs and strengths to create specialized support plans. This includes immediate help and assistance navigating the social system so they can get long-term support.

Next Chapter has worked to change perceptions around human trafficking. The team has implemented many clever ways to help young people without alerting their traffickers, such as handing out lip balms with crisis-line information and giving cell phones to clients who have no other way to communicate. In the three years since the program was founded, it has successfully helped youth transition out of human trafficking and reduced the factors that put them at risk of getting involved in trafficking.

Youth Leadership Award ? Ethno-cultural Youth Advisory Committee ? Youth Services Bureau
The Ethno-cultural Youth Advisory Committee (EYAC) is an inspiring group of seven young activists who work hard to celebrate diversity, create equal opportunities for people of colour, and put an end to systemic racism. EYAC engages young people in activities and programs so they feel welcomed, supported, and connected to their community. They hold regular games nights and social events for the Youth Service Bureau’s Young Men’s Shelter.

They recently held a panel discussion called Diversity in Motion, to give youth activists from around the world a platform to address racism and celebrate diversity. Other work includes an anti-racism workshop for doctors-in-training at CHEO, which helped educate new doctors on how to provide culturally sensitive and trauma-informed care to young patients. Since EYAC was formed 12 years ago, they have reached hundreds of people through their workshops and made a positive impact on the lives of their peers.

Leadership Award – Amber Montgomery
Amber Montgomery is the Senior Caseworker with the Collaborative Justice Program at the Ottawa Courthouse. The Collaborative Justice Program is one of the few restorative justice initiatives in Canada that works directly with offenders to make sure they truly understand the impact of their actions on others. It also gives victims a chance to feel they’ve been heard and acknowledged by both the offender and the justice system. This program has seen exceptional results in making our community safer.

Over the past 14 years, Amber has worked successfully with offenders who have shown very little insight into the harm their actions caused and victims who had little motivation to collaborate. Her case successes are well into the hundreds. Amber has worked tirelessly to make a change in our community, one person at a time, by listening to people, giving them a chance to express themselves, and making sure they feel heard.

Innovation Award – ABLE2’s Fetal Alcohol Resource Program (FARP)
ABLE2’s Fetal Alcohol Resource program (FARP) was launched in 2015 as a partnership between ABLE2, Kids Brain Health Network, CHEO and the Children’s Aid Society of Ottawa. The program supports people living with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, or FASD.

FARP focuses on education and community leadership. The program has provided training to over 1,000 police and probation officers, members of Youth Justice Ontario, Youth Mental Health Courts, and the Ontario Court Judges. People with FASD typically don’t recognize danger and understand social cues, so they are often victims, perpetrators or witnesses of crimes. The program hires people with FASD to serve as mentors for support groups and act as speakers at events. The team at FARP has developed a cost-effective, easily replicable model that provides individualized support and services to individuals with FASD and their families. The program has been so successful that it has been implemented in three other Canadian cities.

Police Professional Award – Cst. Sebastien Lemay
Cst. Sebastien Lemay is the Community Police Officer for Lowertown and Sandy Hill. He is well-liked and has proven himself to be available, attentive, non-judgemental and sensitive to residents’ issues and concerns. Cst. Lemay is an active member of several community groups. He shares crime prevention tips, encourages residents to report crimes, and actively works to reassure the community when crimes take place.

Notably, Cst. Lemay helped demystify police for youth by coordinating a soccer game between youth and police officers during the Lowertown Celebration. He also contributed to a new partnership between Ottawa Community Housing and De La Salle High School to reduce mischief in Lowertown. Cst. Lemay has made a conscious, consistent effort to improve relationships between police and the community. Cst. Lemay makes everyone feel comfortable with his warmth and humour. This makes him an invaluable liaison between the community and the Ottawa Police Service.

3.  Police Reporting Unit hours

Please note that further changes to the operating hours for our Police Reporting Unit may be announced later this fall; however at this time, PRU remains open from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m., 7 days a week, until further notice.

4.  New Neighbourhood Resource Team in Centretown

The Ottawa Police Service (OPS) is pleased to announce the launch of its sixth Neighbourhood Resource Team (NRT) in Centretown this week.

“Our Neighbourhood Resource Teams are the cornerstone of the Service’s community policing model,” said Superintendent Jamie Dunlop with Neighbourhood Policing. “We have had great success with the program so far in other neighbourhoods and we are looking forward to meeting with community leaders and residents in Centretown to learn how to tailor a policing program that meets the needs of that community.”

The first NRTs were launched in October 2019, and include frontline officers, community police officers, school resource officers and traffic services officers. They work with residents, stakeholders and City services to deliver a more holistic approach to policing. Additionally, these teams meet with community leaders to create a customized program unique to those specific neighbourhoods.

“Our goal is to work with the community to develop a plan that fits each specific neighbourhood,” added Supt. Dunlop. “Our NRT officers receive specialized training, including cultural and bias neutral courses, to help them better serve, understand and protect each impacted community.”

For more information, please visit ottawapolice.ca/NRT

********************************
Contact Cst. Darren Joseph directly at josephd@ottawapolice.ca.

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