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Residents have until Friday to fill out policing survey

by Sylene Argent

Essex residents have until Friday, June 12 to voice their opinions, concerns, and comments regarding how the municipality is policed through a Town-issued survey.

  The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) provides the Town of Essex with its policing service through contract, and has since the local Essex Police Service was disbanded in 2009.

  Those wishing to contribute to the survey can expect to answer an array of questions, including their age, to identify the ward in which they live, gender, and how long they have lived in Essex.

  These questions will help the Town better understand how survey responses differ between demographics, it is noted on the survey page. Any identifying information will be removed before results are presented to Council.

  Respondents will also be asked to rate their general satisfaction of the current police force. They will further rate the OPP’s visibility in the community and information sharing, and note how safe one feels in their neighbourhood. They are also asked if they believe the crime rate has decreased or increased over the past few years.

  Those answering the survey will also have to note if they have contacted the OPP for a matter within the Town of Essex in the last year.

  Residents responding to the survey will also be able to provide comments or questions in spaces provided.

  Residents can find the survey at www.essex.ca/PolicingSurvey.

  A news release from the Town of Essex notes only responses from individuals who reside in the Town of Essex will be considered when compiling survey results. Residents can only answer the survey once.

  Councillor Kim Verbeek is hoping for great community response. She has served as a member on the Essex Police Services Board for the past two-terms.

  Verbeek has commented previously she wants to grow the relationship with the OPP and the Town and strengthen the relationship between the OPP and the community through issuing this survey. She wants to use the results as an opportunity to look for areas of improvement as things are always changing.

  “I want to use it as a learning tool, it will give us good insight,” she said before the survey was issued, adding it would also give the OPP good information as well. “An important reason to conduct the survey is to ensure expectations are reflected in how our community is policed.”


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