As the towns of Bradford West Gwillimbury and Innisfil continue to grow, there are concerns that police resources aren’t.
The South Simcoe Police services board presented its 2018 budget to both town councils before Christmas. Both municipalities approved the addition of four new officers.
“The population between Bradford and Innisfil is growing or has grown upwards of 35 per cent over the last four to five years, and the police service is basically status quo and has been for the last 10 years,” says Dan Tucker, president of the South Simcoe Police Association.
“Four is definitely a step in the right direction. Is it enough? We as the association think that it is not.”
Police Chief Andrew Fletcher agrees. He says the service is playing catch up and would like to add four more officers every year for the next five years.
“There’s more houses, the opportunity for more crime, more break-ins, more thefts, just everything as the community grows and as a population grows and so does the call and the demand for service.”
Fletcher says it puts a strain on officers dealing with more calls.
“When you’re running at a bare bones minimum staffing level to start with, when you lose one or two officers on the platoon that can have a tremendous impact and I think the officers are struggling when they do get that big call.”
It leaves the service juggling how it handles calls.
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