Community policing returns to Ottawa, eventually West Carleton

OTTAWA – Part of the Ottawa Police Services’ (OPS) new strategic direction includes a return to community policing.

The OPS released its strategic direction yesterday, and one of the focuses of the plan is to bring back community policing after scrapping the program two years ago, although it won’t be coming to West Carleton yet.

The Community Policing program was cancelled by former Chief Charles Bordeleau in 2017.

The decision to bring it back was made as part of the 2019 – 2020 Strategic Direction plan, which is a result of public feedback and a survey of Ottawa Police officers. 

The research revealed while satisfaction with the quality of policing was high, there were concerns with guns and gangs, violence against specific groups and road safety. 

The Ottawa Police Service also heard the changes to community policing in recent years were not well received.

To address the issue, neighbourhood based teams of officers will be placed in three high-crime areas to enhance relationships with those communities. Those officers will go into neighbourhoods in Vanier, Caldwell and Ottawa South. 

These ‘neighbourhood based problem solving teams’ will address public safety concerns and work on enhancing relationships with the community by focusing on the top concerns. 

After an evaluation, the program is expected to be expanded into more neighbourhoods.