The Minister of Justice outlines the policing priorities for the RCMP, which is the only police force within the Northwest Territories (NWT). The policing priorities are established under the Territorial Policing Services Agreement. The NWT has 33 communities, with restricted road access or ice roads, with a number of communities only accessible by air.The uniqueness of this initiative is the focus on supporting a partnership approach to policing services, particularly at the “community” level. This approach requires the involvement of the community, engaging with the local RCMP detachments in setting the priorities that affect that particular community.Town halls, public meetings dealing with policing issues, and collaboration with Elders, community leaders, chiefs/mayors and councils all form part of establishing a coordinated approach to the needs of the community for that fiscal year. This includes not only the delivery of policing services, but the effective and efficient use of resources, as well as processes for effective monitoring, evaluation and reporting.Key to this “approach” is the continuous monthly feedback to the community, reporting on emerging issues, and the ability to adjust or change the approach while informing and engaging the community on a regular basis. This builds accountability and a trusting relationship between the police and the community, targeting issues that the community acknowledges are important. Through this process, officer and community safety is also increased. The community signs off on this approach and remains accountable along with the RCMP.
The initiative has several objectives:
Community Justice and Community Policing Division.
Shirley Kemeys Jonesshirley_kemeysjones@gov.nt.ca
Community-driven and include all local organizations, government departments, interagency and community organizations, non-governmental organizations and residents.
Undertaken based on the “approach” of building confidence through community engagement, versus directing priorites that may not fit a community.
No, this was a change in outlining the process for establishing plans and priorities.
The initiative was established in year one. Support for education and training was provided to policing and the communites on the process of engagement.
The initiative continues to grow. Plans developed with each community in year two show an increase in community ownership over their policing priorities. Monthly reporting and feedback back to the community has improved the police relationship with residents and leaders.
Local media, community radio and notices to address police/public meetings. Monthly police reports are available to the leaders and residents; and there are monthly engagements between RCMP and the NWT government's Justice Working Group.
An evaluation is planned for the end of year two (2012/13). Feedback is received from the community by the RCMP on monthly basis when meeting with community/local councils. Feedback is also received through RCMP commanding officers' annual visits to the communities, as well as through feedback from community members of the Legislative Assembly.
Focus is for the delivery of policing services to meet the needs of the community. The NWT government supports this approach that builds not only an effective and efficient policing service, but one that is trustworthy and accountable.
In the past, policing priorities were established, such as youth, organized crime, domestic abuse, etc. This initiative is about the “approach” and allowing the community and the local police to identify their policing needs and priorities.