Province Funds Crime-Fighting Initiatives
(Bradford/Innisfil, ON) The South Simcoe Police Service is receiving provincial funding to combat gun and gang violence, sexual violence and harassment, as well as human trafficking.
SSPS is among 16 law enforcement agencies in Ontario to receive funding through a variety of provincial funding opportunities.
Under the Community Safety and Policing Grant (CSP) program the Service will receive $295,278 to help combat gun and gang violence. The project will help equip South Simcoe Police Service’s frontline officers with the education and training needed to better recognize signs of gang activity and gather the intelligence needed to zero in on crime. In addition, the hiring of a professional crime analyst will help enhance the service capacity to gather valuable information on gang members and criminal activity.
Under another stream of the CSP grant program, the Service continues to receive funds to support the work of the Community Mobilization and Engagement Unit (CMEU).
The Community Mobilization and Engagement Unit (CMEU) was established as a pilot program in 2017 and was developed to focus on community safety and well-being and to prevent crime by enhancing community relationships. The $720,000 in funding will help turn CMEU into a fully-operational program and also supports the Crisis Outreach and Support Team (COAST), a program focused on working with local mental health partner agencies to respond to mental health and crisis calls for service. This program continues to grow with the additional specially-trained mental health workers being added to the team from our partner agencies at the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) in Barrie and York Support Services Network (YSSN) police officer. Both CMEU and COAST will increase their focus on youth at risk, and those suffering from addictions associated with opioid abuse in the community.
In addition to the CSP funding, the SSPS has also been the recipient of grant funding through the Proceeds of Crime Grant program. This $150,000 grant will go toward an initiative to help South Simcoe Police expand the capacity of its Crimes Against Persons Unit (CAPU) to include a dedicated investigator to gather intelligence and lead investigations and enforcement activities related to sex crimes. This initiative will enhance the Services ability to respond to the increased human trafficking and drug and gang activity seen in our communities in recent years.
Quote: Chief Andrew Fletcher
“We are so thankful for the ongoing support of our Ministry in funding these necessary programs. These funds allow us to focus our proactive efforts to address emerging community concerns in our growing communities and helps reduce the budget impact on our municipal funding partners.”