Updates from the Chief
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Last week the Surrey Police Service (SPS) reached two significant milestones with the confirmation of our initial deployment date and the official certification of the Surrey Police Union, which now represents our sworn police officers (read news releases).
The Surrey Policing Transition Trilateral Committee (SPTTC), which is made up of senior representatives from the three levels of government, has determined an initial deployment date for SPS. The first group of 50 SPS officers will be operationally deployed beginning on, or before, November 30, 2021. As part of the phased, integrated transition process, these first 50 police officers will be assigned to positions within the RCMP Municipal Police Unit in Surrey (i.e. Surrey RCMP). This first group will be followed by subsequent groups of officers as the transition gathers momentum throughout 2022 and 2023.
While there is still work to be done to prepare for this first deployment, there are numerous working groups assigned to meeting this timeline. The SPS will be more than ready to meet the November 30 date. To-date, we have hired over 70 sworn officers, with more coming on board almost every week. In total, SPS has received over 1,100 applications so far. Personal issue equipment is starting to arrive, and our first five-week training course for experienced officers will begin in early September. Our work to deploy our officers is well in hand.
Deputy Chief Constable Mike LeSage works closely with RCMP senior staff in Ottawa on the SPTTC working groups, and they are fully committed to the policing transition and the November 30 deployment date, as are Public Safety Canada, the Province of BC, and the City of Surrey.
The Surrey Police Union and CUPE 402 (representing our civilian staff) are also fundamental to the ongoing build of SPS. I look forward to working closely with the leadership of each union to provide the best in public safety for the citizens of Surrey, and a supportive and healthy working environment for our police officers and civilian employees.
This is an exciting time for SPS and for Surrey as we prepare to deploy our first officers into policing operations. As additional details of the phased transition are confirmed, more information will be shared so you know what to expect when Surrey Police Service officers begin to respond to calls for service in this fall, alongside Surrey RCMP members.
Chief Constable Norm Lipinski