||In 2009, the Urban Brigade was established within an operational initiative which sought to provide a management framework for festive events and crowd control, while improving efficiency in the organization. Historically, crowd control and event management services were provided through officers in various community policing centres.
Approximately 123 police officers and cadets are assigned to the Urban Brigade, based on identified needs. Most of the cadets are students in college-level police education programs. Local community police officers are also used, if needed. The Urban Brigade is only operational from June to September.
||This initiative has several objectives:
- improve community safety services;
- better support community police stations by freeing up their officers for other community-related policing tasks; and
- reduce overtime for community police officers.
||Since 2009, this initiative has rationalized personnel demands for events where police need to be deployed. This can be attributed to police efforts to raise awareness and inform event promoters of the limitations and constraints on the service available for events, shifting the onus onto event organizers to provide for their own security needs. This initiative has increased the police service’s expertise in managing large events, and improved the management of its human resources.
Feedback received from event promoters and citizens suggests that this initiative has contributed to maintaining Montreal’s reputation as a festive, welcoming and safe city.
||In terms of officers and cost, this initiative used 123 officers on average per year from 2009–2011, at an average cost of $901,500 per year. Physical resources for 2009–2011 cost $151,500 on average per year. In total, the average cost of the brigade is $1,053,000 annually (2009–2011).
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