SURREY (NEWS 1130) – A former solicitor general says creating a new municipal police force in Surrey is the right move – but the mayor is not communicating that message properly to the community.
On Monday night, Surrey city council approved a budget which earmarks $129-million for the transition, and former solicitor general Kash Heed says he backs the decision to scrap the Surrey RCMP.
He believes a new force will improve local policing accountability, but is concerned Mayor Doug McCallum isn’t properly explaining exactly how the change will make the city safer.
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“The research certainly supports transitioning – all that work has been done,” he says. “But the political, chaotic environment that’s been created as a result of this and the lack of communication is troubling.”
Heed, who is also a former police chief, says the mayor’s approach has caused unnecessary problems.
“The chaotic environment that has been created because of a lack of an effective and efficient communication plan is going to create doubt within the minds of the people that are going to be directly affected in Surrey,” he says, adding people need to know why the new force is needed and exactly how the city plans to go about creating it.
“If – and I hope it doesn’t – this whole transition gets sidetracked and put aside, it will be the result of politics versus what is the best thing for the people in Surrey,” Heed says.