There will be more beat officers walking the streets of Toronto after the city’s police force unveiled an expansion to its neighbourhood community officer program.
Toronto Chief of Police James Ramer and Mayor John Tory announced the news during a joint press conference on Saturday morning.
The force’s program will now be expanded to 13 more Toronto neighbourhoods. The areas were selected after a “comprehensive analyses, including of crime and demographics,” Toronto police said in a statement.
The program will be managed through redeployment of existing resources, an approach agreed upon in the 2022 budget process.
“The NCOs are visible and accessible to the public, walking through their neighbourhoods, meeting residents and engaging in collaborative problem solving to deliver sustainable neighbourhood driven solutions,” Ramer said.
Toronto police said that “independent evaluation” of the program showed around 90 per cent of residents felt safer with police officers in their neighbourhoods.
“These officers are working to make communities in Toronto safer and are helping us build public trust and confidence in the Service,” Tory said. “Their goals as part of this program will be to reduce crime, build relationships, gain insights into community needs, and improve insights into local crime.”
The neighbourhoods where the program will be expanded are:
- South Parkdale
- New Toronto
- Elms-Old Rexdale
- York University Heights
- Clanton Park
- Dorset Park
- Eglinton East
- Harbourfront-City Place