REGINA – Officers from both the Regina Police Service (RPS) and the RCMP depot were called to a Co-Op grocery store in Regina’s south end for a special fight.
“Basically we’re fighting something other than crime, fighting hunger and working together with the Regina Food Bank,” RPS inspector Evan Bray said.
As part of Regina’s first ‘pack the cruiser’ fundraiser, both forces were aiming to fill up their cruisers with donations from shoppers to end hunger in Regina.
“We see people who are struggling for a whole bunch of factors. It could be household income, it could be disruption in the household, it could be the sudden loss of a job or an illness,” Regina Food Bank CEO Steven Compton said.
“Basically we’re fighting something other than crime, [we’re] fighting hunger”
Helping those in need is why this battle of the forces became somewhat fierce, yet still friendly.
“What they’ve done is that they brought the Food bank van in here. So once it gets too full we’ll have to unload a bit into their van so we can keep stacking ours.” Bray quipped.
“We’ve actually been taking food out of our SUV and putting it in theirs [Regina Police] so that they didn’t feel bad,” RCMP corporal Rishan Pinto responded.
Unfortunately for RPS, the RCMP had a secret weapon.
“It was actually one of my cadets and I think we owe him a lot of kudos, it was his idea to have this,” Pinto said.
Cadet Dennis Bell said he is originally from Surrey and was accustomed to seeing a similar type of event happen there every year.
“Because I’m a cadet here at Depot, I thought that we’re here for six months so it would be a great idea to give back to the community while I’m here in Regina,” Bell said.
“I can tell you from the people we serve that they appreciate what’s happening today”
Still, for both forces it’s no secret that public trust in police forces across the country have been questioned with recent high profile events involving controversial police actions.
“It’s a difficult time for police right now, especially when you watch the news,” Pinto said.
But coming together for the community displayed an important image that will be remembered.
“I can tell you from the people we serve that they appreciate what’s happening today,” Compton added.
The Regina Food Bank says every pound of food donated equals three meals served and with both cruisers packed that equates to 6,000 meals served.Follow @BrandonGonez