The announcement of Alberta’s Police Funding Model has resulted in additional resources for the Alberta RCMP for 2020/21, specifically 76 new police officers and 57 new civilian support positions.
These additional resources will directly or indirectly support frontline policing in communities we serve across rural Alberta, noted a release.
“The Alberta RCMP understands that police resource levels are of particular importance to our communities and even more so under the new funding model. We know that targeting and reducing rural crime goes hand-in-hand with sufficient resources as demonstrated by boots on the ground.
“Within the RCMP’s integrated service delivery model, detachment resources are augmented by centralized frontline support and specialized units as well as by civilian support positions. This means that the benefit of additional RCMP resources can be felt in communities across Alberta.”
To date, the RCMP has filled a total of 46 positions to increase rural policing levels and to enhance rural crime reduction efforts.
The filled positions include 25 frontline police positions in Alberta rural communities; 18 centralized police officer positions to provide support and specialized services to all rural Alberta RCMP detachments; and three civilian support positions to provide administrative and program support across the RCMP provincial jurisdiction.
To determine allocation of new resources, an analysis of workload was undertaken at each detachment location.
This analysis included factors such as travel time, call volume, the type of crimes occurring in the area, amount of time required for investigations, size of detachment, and time available for proactive policing, which includes strategic patrols, community engagement, visiting schools, and attending community events.
“Rural Albertans asked for action against rising crime, and our government responded with Alberta’s largest single investment in policing since the RCMP’s March West. Putting more boots on the ground in rural Alberta will help protect residents and ensure they feel safe in their communities,” said Doug Schweitzer, minister of Justice and Solicitor General.
The following detachments have received new frontline police positions:
– Western Alberta District: five positions – Beaverlodge, Edson, Evansburg, Mayerthorpe and Valleyview.
– Southern Alberta District: five positions – Airdrie (two positions), Cochrane, Okotoks and Strathmore
– Central Alberta District: 10 positions – Camrose, Blackfalds, Leduc, Morinville, Parkland, Rocky Mountain House (two positions), Stettler, Strathcona and Thorsby.
– Eastern Alberta District: five positions – Athabasca, Bonnyville, Cold Lake, Elk Point and St. Paul.
“AUMA members expect and need to see more front-line police resources. We appreciate that it takes time to fill and train these new resources, and we expect there will be net new resources coming soon. We are happy to be on the path, but there is still a lot of work to be done. We continue to advocate that because municipalities pay for policing, we must have input into the delivery of police service in communities.”
– Barry Morishita, President, Alberta Urban Municipalities Association
“Policing and public safety resourcing levels continue to be an issue for rural communities across Alberta. It is encouraging to see the RCMP partially investing the increased police cost contributions from rural municipalities into frontline resources in rural Alberta. RMA looks forward to working with the RCMP and Government of Alberta to identify how rural municipalities can have greater input into determining where increased rural policing resources are distributed throughout the province, which will hopefully lead to improved rural service levels.”
– Al Kemmere, President, Rural Municipalities of Alberta
“The RCMP is committed to working in partnership with our communities to ensure Albertans feel safe, in their homes, in their backyards, and in their farmyards. The new funding will allow us to directly and indirectly support frontline policing by adding new police officers and support positions in our detachments, ultimately benefiting the communities we serve across Alberta,” added Deputy Commissioner Curtis Zablocki, commanding officer, Alberta RCMP.
“This new funding is an unprecedented financial commitment to policing in response to the concerns expressed by rural Alberta communities. The Alberta RCMP is committed to continuing our efforts to provide Albertans with the high quality, modern provincial police service that they expect and deserve.”