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  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

Essex OPP discuss three-year priorities and ongoing concerns at monthly meeting

- Lock it or Lose it checks are conducted in Kingsville -

by Adam Gault

Essex OPP’s monthly Police Services Board meeting took place on Thursday, November 5, with a focus on what the detachment will prioritize and focus on in the community over the next three years, along with ongoing policing issues within the Town of Essex.

  The priorities for the detachment over the next few years, which include sexual violence and harassment, safe driving concerns, at-risk youth, substance abuse, and human trafficking, were identified through study on provincial and regional issues.

  Additional analysis and consultation efforts will seek to further prioritize these areas to develop effective management strategies to reduce victimization surrounding these crimes, and to bring forward more effective policing strategies.

  Speaking to more current policing strategies, OPP Sergeant, Todd Lavigne, went over the monthly report from September, noting that traffic enforcement and compliance issues continue to be one of the most pressing concerns for the OPP in Essex, with the OPP receiving a combined 67 calls for service on the matter over the course of the month.

Also surrounding vehicular issues, are ongoing concerns around vehicles being broken into and stolen from around the region.

To coincide with the end of Crime Prevention Week 2020, the Essex County OPP launched the “Lock It or Lose It” campaign, to remind residents of the importance of locking cars, sheds, and homes as the strongest deterrent to thefts and crimes of opportunity, noting that many calls for service are from individuals who have failed to lock their vehicles.

“If something’s left unlocked, people are going to go through it, and that causes our [crime] stats to go up,” Lavigne explained. “It’d be so simple to just lock your door and they move on.”

  Essex County OPP Detachment Commander, Glenn Miller, also spoke to the importance of Crime Prevention Week, explaining community safety and wellbeing is a shared responsibility between the police and the area communities.

“Preventing crime is a goal that every citizen should share. Things that often affect society the most, are generally things that people don’t see, however, we do,” Miller said. “Enjoy your community, your neighbours, your friends, and help to advance to the police workable solutions that will serve as a strong reminder that crime is not acceptable.”

This coincides with the launch of MADD Canada’s annual Project Red Ribbon, which is reminding motorists about the importance of not just driving sober, but staying vigilant in reporting suspected drivers who may be under the influence.

  “[Police] continue to respond to numerous collisions involving drugs and alcohol, and sadly, there continues to be a number of fatal and personal injury collisions,” Miller explained. “I’m pleased to see the officers in Essex continuing to do a number of RIDES [checks]. It allows us to interact, if just briefly, with members of the community and also enforce to them that there is an absolute zero tolerance in relation to operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.”


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