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Ontario Provincial Police the wrong choice for Barrie

April 2007

I find it hard to believe that there are still people out there who feel that Barrie City Council should disband Barrie Police and contract the O.P.P. to police the city. This is an extremely misguided way to avoid the rising cost of policing Barrie.

The O.P.P. took over policing Barrie once before. Back in 1946, the Town of Barrie disbanded their police force in favour of the O.P.P. The cost was set at $1750 per man per year, for a total cost of around $17,000 per year. By 1953, the cost skyrocketed to around $60,000 per year! It took until 1956 for Barrie to re-establish their own police force.

While the O.P.P. does strive to serve the interests of the communities that contract their services, the the O.P.P. ultimately serves their interests first. This is not a slam against the O.P.P., but a corporate fact. You don’t have to look any further that Caledonia to see this. The situation in Caledonia is requiring a greater number of officers than are currently posted to the area, so detachments across Ontario have been raided of spare officers who can be sent there.

Having the O.P.P police Barrie would be a huge mistake that would see costs rise, service go down and Barrie City council loose control of policing issues.

About the author

Bruce Forsyth

Bruce Forsyth served in the Royal Canadian Navy Reserve for 13 years (1987-2000). He served with units in Toronto, Hamilton & Windsor and worked or trained at CFB Esquimalt, CFB Halifax, CFB Petawawa, CFB Kingston, CFB Toronto, Camp Borden, The Burwash Training Area and LFCA Training Centre Meaford.

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