Residents will see increased police and emergency service presence in the downtown area in an effort to reduce crime and increase safety.
Starting earlier this week, The City’s Protective Services Division, which includes RCMP, Red Deer Emergency Services (RDES), and Municipal Police implemented a plan to increase their presence in the downtown core. This will continue through the month of October.
“We’ve heard from the community – both businesses and residents – that crime in the downtown area is a concern,” said Craig Curtis, City Manager. “This is a short-term measure to address crime prevention until the RCMP’s new downtown unit is up and running in November.”
“We recognize and understand that citizens are concerned about safety in our downtown,” said Mayor Tara Veer. “The downtown was identified as a priority in our most recent Annual Policing Plan, and earlier this year Council committed funding for 10 additional RCMP members, four of whom will be dedicated to the new Downtown core unit.”
The increased presence will include additional patrols by RCMP and Community Peace Officers, both on foot and in vehicles, on rotating schedules, seven days a week. They will be targeting criminal activity and offenders, and directing vulnerable people to available supports.
RDES will focus their Safety Codes inspectors in the downtown, and increase their community engagement efforts.
Residents will also see increased clean-up efforts, thanks to additional provincial funding. The Downtown Business Association (DBA) Clean Team will be expanding into Railyards and extending their hours on the weekends. Funding will also be used to enhance The City’s public needle debris public education program.
On an on-going basis, The City also does proactive enforcement on poorly maintained, or derelict buildings. The City has a list of derelict properties and tracks and records complaints received as well as any actions taken on each property. The enforcement process can take a long time, especially if a property owner is unwilling to clean up their site. The last resort for The City is an application to the court.
“With great RCMP visibility in the downtown, we hope to deter the type of activity that can sometimes occur near derelict buildings,” said Curtis.
For more information, please contact:
Communications and Strategic Planning
The City of Red Deer