General Occurrence Reader Unit (Synopsis)

York Regional Police

Description: In May 2011, the York Regional Police (YRP) established the General Occurrence (GO) Reader Unit to improve the quality of information going from police investigators to the Crown Attorney’s Office, and to address inefficiencies and decrease workload for staff sergeants.

The new unit reviews and approves all General Occurrence reports and Motor Vehicle Collision reports submitted to the Versadex Records Management System. The unit ensures compliance with the police service’s regulations and procedures and with other provincial and federal acts. Its other responsibilities include reassigning all occurrences for investigation to the appropriate unit and assigning and managing follow-ups; reviewing and approving all criminal and provincial Crown folders (except those of specialty units); and providing technical and educational support to officers and supervisors.

The unit clears general occurrences (following standards from the Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics), ensures that the Crown Folder Checklist York Regional Police forms for both criminal and provincial matters are kept up to date, and ensures quality review for intimate domestic violence reports.
Objective: The GO Reader Unit provides a strict and consistent review of General Occurrence reports to improve the quality and completeness of information that investigators provide to the Crown Attorney’s Office. The unit improves the efficiency of Crown folder processing, reduces organizational liability, supports the provincial government’s Justice on Target protocol and reduces disclosure issues in the courts. The unit also reduces staff sergeant workload.
Outcomes: The initiative met its intended objectives. A formal evaluation has not been conducted; however, feedback received from the Crown Attorney’s Office has been very positive. The following outcomes have been observed by YRP:
  • District inspector and staff sergeant workloads are reduced.
  • District command staff receive better feedback concerning overdue folders and follow-ups.
  • Substantially fewer Crown folders are incomplete for first court appearances.
  • The quality of reports, Show Cause folders and responses to public requests for information has increased.
  • Officers scan and attach their images and notes, resulting in fewer disclosure issues, decreasing the backlog of unattached images, supporting the Justice on Target protocol, and reducing the use of paper by 50% in 2012 (compared to 2011).
  • Communication has improved with the Court Bureau, data entry processors, records clerks and district supervisors.
  • Many communication and information processes are faster and more efficient.
  • Higher-quality reports and Crown folders lead to more convictions in court.
  • More risk management issues are being identified.
Resources: There are no staffing or equipment costs. Existing staff and equipment were utilized.
Province: Ontario
Record Entry Date: 2013-08-01
Date modified: