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Surrey councillor calls VPD chief 'hypocrite' for approving police transition while asking for more officers

Last Updated Dec 5, 2019 at 11:42 am PDT

FILE - Vancouver Police Chief Adam Palmer pauses during a news conference in Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday November 8, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Brenda Locke says it's a double standard for Palmer to argue for additional funding to hire more VPD officers

She says he's a hypocrite for signing off on Surrey's police transition while asking for more officers of his own

SURREY (NEWS 1130) – A Surrey city councillor is lashing out at Vancouver’s police chief, calling him a “hypocrite” for supporting the police transition and fewer officers in Surrey.

The Vancouver Police Department is currently looking to garner additional funding and staff, but when it comes to Surrey’s transition, Brenda Locke says VPD Chief Adam Palmer signed off on the reduction in officers.

The Surrey Police Transition Plan was put together by the City of Vancouver, the City of Surrey, the VPD and consultants.

Locke says it’s a double standard for Palmer to argue for additional funding to hire more VPD officers while simultaneously recommending cuts in Surrey.

“Obviously, Vancouver sees Surrey as its poor cousin and we can put up with less and they can ask for more. I think it was disrespectful to our RCMP that worked so hard. It was pretty offensive, to be frank.”

She says the VPD wouldn’t stand for fewer officers if the positions were reversed.

“It’s a little rich when the chief is asking in Vancouver for significantly more officers but for whatever reason, for Surrey, they recommend less officers,” Locke says.

“So everything in [the report], they have to take responsibility for and one of the things that is absolutely glaring in the report is the lack of fiscal accountability,” she says.

Earlier this week, Palmer spoke to Vancouver city council, saying the VPD needs 35 additional staff members to deal with what he calls “years of under-investment.”

Locke argues Surrey is three times the size of Vancouver, the police report was done without public consultation, and fewer officers will put public safety at risk.