Wednesday 3 June 1992
Barbara Elizabeth Hill
Ian James Cameron
Evelyn M. Buck
STANDING COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT AGENCIES
*Chair / Président: Runciman, Robert W. (Leeds-Grenville PC)
*Vice-Chair / Vice-Président: McLean, Allan K. (Simcoe East/-Est PC)
*Bradley, James J. (St Catharines L)
*Carter, Jenny (Peterborough ND)
*Cleary, John C. (Cornwall L)
Ferguson, Will, (Kitchener ND)
*Frankford, Robert (Scarborough East/-Est ND)
*Grandmaître, Bernard (Ottawa East/-Est L)
*Marchese, Rosario (Fort York ND)
Stockwell, Chris (Etobicoke West/-Ouest PC)
*Waters, Daniel (Muskoka-Georgian Bay/Muskoka-Baie-Georgienne ND)
*Wiseman, Jim (Durham West/-Ouest ND)
Substitutions / Membres remplaçants:
*Murdock, Sharon (Sudbury ND) for Mr Wiseman
*In attendance / présents
Clerk / Greffier: Arnott, Douglas
Staff / Personnel: Pond, David, research officer, Legislative Research Service
The committee met at 1009 in room 228.
Resuming consideration of intended appointments.
The Chair (Mr Robert W. Runciman): Our first witness this morning is Barbara Elizabeth Hill, who's an intended appointee as a member of the City of Kingston Police Services Board. Miss Hill, would you like to come forward and take a seat at one of the microphones? Welcome to the committee. You were selected for review by the Conservative Party. I'll ask Mr McLean to begin. It will be a half-hour review, 10 minutes to each party.
Mr Allan K. McLean (Simcoe East): How long have you lived in the area?
Ms Barbara Elizabeth Hill: I moved to Kingston in 1973.
Mr McLean: Have you been involved in the community?
Ms Hill: To a great degree. I have been on the United Way most recently as a member of the campaign cabinet, doing the campaign for major businesses. I was a member of the community editorial board of the Whig-Standard. I've been a member of the board of the Kingston branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association. Certainly in my work I've been active in the community. I've been a social worker in the community since 1973 and have worked for children's aid and the John Howard Society.
Mr McLean: You'd be familiar with the workings of the police services board then?
Ms Hill: Yes.
Mr McLean: The interesting point that's been made has to do with the operation of some of the directions the police services boards are giving. Do you believe that pepper spray would be something that you would consider allowing your police to use?
Ms Hill: I think I would really want to know a little more about it. I believe strongly that police are accountable to the community for any use of force. Whenever you get an incident in which you could potentially harm a person in that community there should be ground rules, guidelines, a policy set up as to where, when and in what circumstances those are used. So I really can't answer that on the pepper spray right now. If it is an alternative to a gun, that may be, and it depends on the circumstances. I would want to sit down as a member of the board and really look at those policies and guidelines.
Mr McLean: Is there anything you have on your mind that you would see done that's not being done in the community with regard to community policing?
Ms Hill: My thoughts about community policing are that it's more an attitude than it is a program, so I would want to find a way in which that kind of attitude can be integrated into the existing police force. My fear is that a lot of these programs that get developed become add-ons to the police. So, again, I would really want to work within the police board to find a direction for the future and do some long-range planning around how that can happen.
I have even seen little things in our community -- when I was running the other day I saw my first policeman on a bike. I think that really improves the relationship between the public and the police. It's not behind a car door; it's someone who is right there and accessible.
Mr McLean: You would promote that aspect of policing.
Ms Hill: Sure, do the beat on the --
Mr McLean: Are there any hills in Kingston?
Ms Hill: Any hills? There's one right up by the penitentiary which is incredible.
Mr McLean: They would be downhill out of there all the way.
What other aspects of community policing would you be looking at? I know the size of Kingston and I'm wondering if you would be looking at specific areas within Kingston where you would have more patrols.
Ms Hill: I know there has been a lot of concern raised about the north end of Kingston. If anyone knows anything about Kingston, it's pretty well divided: It's kind of the north end and the south end. I know there has been a lot of concern recently and that some members of the north end are talking about wanting a substation up in the north end. I'm not in favour of that. I think there are different ways to become involved in the community.
The police could get involved in other ways with social service agencies that are up in the north end. There's one that's just starting which is called Better Beginnings. How can the police somehow involve themselves in that -- it may be a peripheral role -- to become part of that process?
Mr McLean: Yes. Are you familiar with the other members who are on the board now?
Ms Hill: No, not right now. I did know some of the past members but not some of the present members.
Mr McLean: Are you a member of any political party?
Ms Hill: Yes. I'm a member of the NDP.
Mr McLean: Do you think that would have a bearing on the recommendation for the appointment?
Ms Hill: How do you mean? I would hope that --
Mr Rosario Marchese (Fort York): Would you be biased?
Mr Bernard Grandmaître (Ottawa East): You are so blunt.
Mr Marchese: I was just putting it out in the open.
Ms Hill: I would hope I come to this position with certain skills and certain talents, and I would want to use them for that.
Mr McLean: I would hope that you would, and I am sure you will do a good job.
Ms Hill: I would try to be as non-partisan as I could.
Mr McLean: Thank you.
The Chair: I will move to the government party.
Mr Robert Frankford (Scarborough East): I'm kind of intrigued about the community editorial board of the Kingston Whig-Standard.
Ms Hill: Yes. That was an innovation about 10 years ago. I think it's one of the only papers in Canada that has a community editorial board. They pick representatives in the community who are knowledgeable on certain topics and they can write whatever. It's terrific. I think mostly the reason I was asked to the community editorial board was my position with the John Howard Society. We are a prison town. There are a lot of prison issues and criminal justice issues discussed in the town. I did some writing on other social issues as well.
Mr Frankford: So you actually write editorials?
Ms Hill: I did, and my term just ended.
Mr Frankford: I see.
Ms Jenny Carter (Peterborough): Police boards, like so many other things, have been largely, I guess, white men. Do you think it's important to change that so that they are representative of all the elements in the community?
Ms Hill: Yes.
Ms Carter: Why?
Ms Hill: Because they're interacting with the public all the time, and I think if they're representative of the community they're more integrated with that community and more able to be seen as part of that community rather than as something that stands back.
With respect to employment equity, I would be really concerned that employment equity be seen not as a means to expand the police force but as something in which every existing position or every new position that comes up is reviewed according to that and there's really an attempt and there's a plan. I don't know about the employment equity plan of Kingston; I'm not sure of the details. But I would certainly do my best to work towards those goals and improve them.
Ms Carter: There must be a plan, I believe.
Ms Hill: I would assume so.
Ms Carter: Do you feel that having more women on the police force might make a difference, for example, to treatment of domestic calls?
Ms Hill: Certainly. Knowing the women's community in Kingston, just having access to the shelters and contacting the women, the women are very nervous and anxious about any sort of contact with males at that point in time. I think it's very important for the police to be sensitive to that.
Ms Carter: What about the racial aspect?
Ms Hill: Our racial mix in Kingston is really quite limited, but there's a growing East Asian population. I certainly hope that as that grows it will become more reflective of that.
Mr Daniel Waters (Muskoka-Georgian Bay): My question would stem from a conversation I had last weekend with one of the senior officers of the OPP. His concern was the training of new officers. He feels our society right now has become so complex that the old route of training an officer in the use of a handgun once and saying "That's good enough" is gone. I would like your comments on how you feel we should change that.
Ms Hill: I'd like to see the training of officers be more related to the social service agencies in the community. What I've seen is that most of the time most situations do not need enforcement per se. Certainly there is an element out there where you're talking about enforcement, but in many cases it's connecting that individual or that family with some agency in the community to help them with the problem that brought them to the attention of the police in the first place.
I think the police have to become more familiar with some of those underlying social concerns, family concerns, family issues, individual problems, mental health problems. They don't have to become experts; they're not social workers. What they have to do is know where to go when they need the help. It's more integrating the police within the structure of the community rather than seeing them as separate.
Mr Waters: So you're saying that in some cases the police should deal with a situation prior to it becoming something that has to be controlled by force.
Ms Hill: I certainly think that's one of the advantages of community policing, which again I say is an attitude, not a program. The police officer is out there in the community on a regular basis, sees what's going on, sees the pockets of problems, sees some of the issues and can be a partner with that community in mobilizing some of the resources in order to deal with that.
Mr Waters: Do you see Kingston as having special needs for the police services board because -- you brought up the topic --
Ms Hill: The prisons. Yes, I believe it does. Part of it has come from my own concern over the last little while around the media. I don't know if people know, but we have a halfway house in Kingston which has expanded and there have been a lot problems related to it, and most of it comes from this fear of crime that's out there in this community, which I find very scary. Not to say people don't have a right to be afraid of crime, but I think we're relating ourselves to a circumstance around the realities of crime which are more like the United States than they are the Canadian reality. I think the police, particularly in our community, have a responsibility to work with the media and work with the community in a way that helps people deal with that irrational fear of crime. So there's one in that, because we're always talking about there's more crime in our community because we're a prison town.
I've certainly written editorials on the fact that we have not seen the increase in the rate of crime in Kingston. We've seen an increase in the number of prisoners in Kingston, but we don't see a related increase in the rate of crime. So where is it coming from? Part of my concern has always been that around budget time the issues of crime rates, fear of crime, that we're a prison town, come up, and I think it feeds into that mentality.
I would want to work on the police services board to find a way to help people understand what's out there and the realities of crime. I don't want to underestimate it, but I don't want to overestimate it either, because it leads to very bad policy decisions. Does that answer your question?
Mr Waters: Yes. One final question I'd have is, I represent the town of Midland, and beside it we have Penetanguishene Mental Health Centre. What we have found is that there are a large number of people who come out, and because that's the first town, they stay there. That creates special needs within that community. Do you find the same thing only because of the prisons there, and what would those needs be and how would you see that the police could assist you?
Ms Hill: Again, I think that's overestimated. I've worked in prisons for well over 15 years and most people I see go home, and home is not Kingston. Yet Kingston believes that everybody coming out is coming to Kingston. I don't think that's a reality.
Part of the problem is that some people who do come to Kingston stay in Kingston because they've lost their connection with whatever home community they've had, and yes, there are special needs.
Certainly I've been on the other side of the coin with the police; I really do believe we've almost been like two sides of the same coin. You know, police officers have said that to me, "You have your job to do and we have our job to do." It doesn't mean they can't be complementary. I see there are special needs that maybe the police cannot deal with. They're more related to social service agencies and the aftercare network that should be developed -- and supported by the police.
Mr Waters: Thank you very much.
Mr Grandmaître: In your description of the city of Kingston -- maybe I misunderstood you -- you said you weren't in favour of a north end precinct. Did I understand you correctly?
Ms Hill: Substation. They wanted to build a substation.
Mr Grandmaître: Does that mean you don't believe in community policing?
Ms Hill: No, but I think there are better ways than to build headquarters for police. The city of Kingston is not like Toronto, for example. We're talking about a distance of maybe three miles between the downtown headquarters and whatever substation it would be. I just have difficulty in seeing structures as community policing. I've said before, community policing is not a program, it's an attitude. All police officers should take that out into the field with them, that attitude that they're going to be on the beat. Their responsibility's not just to respond to calls but to be active in the community in other ways.
Mr Grandmaître: Don't you think this is what community policing is all about, to have citizens participate or helping?
Ms Hill: Yes.
Mr Grandmaître: You don't need a 15-storey building, I agree with you.
Ms Hill: Yes. That's all I was talking about.
Mr Grandmaître: But just having an office on Main Street in the north end of Kingston, just for people to notice that --
Ms Hill: There is a presence.
Mr Grandmaître: Yes, because community policing in this province is a very successful program.
Ms Hill: As I said, I'm all in favour of community policing. That's not an issue. The issue is when it becomes a program, not an attitude. What I'm afraid of with community policing is that it becomes an add-on and that all one does is kind of keep expanding and expanding. I think it should be part of every police officer's attitude and responsibility.
I should mention that there's even some concern in the north end. Not all members of the north end community believe they want more police presence there. It's a real debate going on. I think I'd want to talk to more people in that community.
Mr Grandmaître: As you know, municipal councillors are for ever objecting to police budgets, not only in your community but right across this province. Councillors are saying, "Look, we're paying 80% of the cost of policing, yet we have very little to say in the final decision of paying for those programs." Do you think municipal councils should have more of a say in police budgets?
Ms Hill: I haven't really thought that one through. I certainly believe budgets are important tools to see the direction of the police. I understand it goes first through the police services board and then goes for approval to the municipality. I'd like to hold off answering that question until I've been on the board for a little while.
Mr Grandmaître: It's a very touchy one.
Ms Hill: Yes. As far as police budgets are concerned, I certainly have very strong feelings about police budgets. I don't want to see police budgets grow at the expense of other budgets. In our community there's no mechanism to cap or review critically the police budget, but there sure as heck is a way to cap Ministry of Community and Social Services budgets; other social agency budgets that are suffering. I believe we've got to have some sort of balance to this question.
Mr Grandmaître: Are you familiar with the freedom of information act or legislation, the most recent one?
Ms Hill: Not in its entirety. I guess I would have to become more familiar with it. But I must say that as a social worker, the whole business of confidentiality is like second nature to me.
Mr Grandmaître: Police service boards are very reluctant -- I shouldn't use the word "reluctant" -- are interpreting the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act in their own different ways. You don't have a common denominator: "This is what it really means for us." Some police service boards are reluctant to pass on any kind of information, whereas others are a little more flexible.
Do you think those sections of the freedom of information act should be tightened and police services boards or the police chief, or any constable, for that matter, should be at liberty to provide more information to the media?
Ms Hill: Do you mean about specific individuals in the community?
Mr Grandmaître: Individuals, yes.
Ms Hill: I would almost like to see that taken on a case-by-case situation, partly because when you infringe on someone's right to privacy there has to be a counterbalancing, pressing reason to do so. It's very important to maintain that. That would be my answer. I'm not familiar enough with the freedom of information act to know how that's tightened. As long as that in principle is there for me, that is something I would agree with.
Mr Grandmaître: Thank you.
Mr John C. Cleary (Cornwall): How long do I have? Three minutes.
I want to get back to budgets again; I know that every municipality including Kingston just went through that. The need is there and the municipal people try to hold their increases to a minimum. You said you'd like to involve the community more in some areas of the province. I'm not saying Kingston is one of them, but I know there are other areas in eastern Ontario where police services boards do not recognize the volunteers to the fullest. I'm talking about auxiliary police departments that make their presence known and are used in some areas. I would like your views on this.
Ms Hill: I'm always in favour of the use of volunteers. I come from a voluntary agency. That's my background. In the enforcement of laws, I would want to be careful in what mechanism one uses the police volunteers; perhaps they shouldn't be used in enforcement activities. When you talk about prevention, when you talk about helping the police become more integrated in that particular community, then volunteers are important. I'm not sure, and I can't answer that definitively now, that they should be involved in the enforcement of laws.
Mr Cleary: One thing is parades. The presence of a uniformed person could do the same job as a police officer. It seems to me in parts of Ontario these volunteers are having a hard time cracking the police services board.
Ms Hill: You mean getting on, getting appointed.
Mr Cleary: Getting recognized and getting in place the hours per week they have to volunteer.
Ms Hill: I would certainly want to support the use of volunteers, but again, I would want to look very carefully at how volunteers are used. I certainly would want to recognize them.
The Chair: Thank you very much, Ms Hill. That concludes the questioning. Thank you for travelling from Kingston to appear here today. We wish you well.
Ms Hill: Thank you.
The Chair: Our next witness is Ian James Cameron. He is an intended appointee as a member of the City of Orillia Police Services Board. Welcome to the committee, Mr Cameron. You were selected for review by the official opposition. Mr Cleary, are you prepared to begin the questioning of the witness?
Mr Cleary: I could.
The Chair: We could pass and come back to you.
Mr Cleary: Okay, pass.
The Chair: Mr McLean?
Mr McLean: Welcome to the committee. I see one of the recommendations is that the candidate have a record of community involvement. What have you been mainly involved in as a member of the chamber or any of the local organizations?
Mr Cameron: Most of the involvement I've had is on community boards of directors of, I suppose, social service agencies. I don't know how far back you want to go. I've been a board member of a children's mental health centre, of the Orillia Association for the Handicapped, which you know is devoted to the development of handicapped individuals. I've also been an adviser to groups of victims of crime, worked very closely with a group in Collingwood called Aftermath -- for families of sexually abused children. It also has a chapter here in Toronto, which is an association of families of victims of crime, children and also adult survivors. I've worked with a lot of community groups without being on the board in my capacity as a lawyer at the legal clinic where we're often involved in the initial stages of incorporating a group, helping it set up bylaws, operating rules and so on. There's also the Couchiching Cooperative Homes Inc. I was on the board and also a resident there for a period of time.
Mr McLean: Okay, since you're a lawyer, I'd like to talk a little bit about the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The standing committee on the Legislative Assembly has considered this issue and done a comprehensive review. In principle, what do you see are the drawbacks with the present legislation, if any?
Mr Cameron: I should say that, as an advocate, seeking to prove that people were victims of crime -- I have an active practice before the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, so I have frequent occasion to seek records from police forces and other social agencies in order to prove a history of victimization.
You may be aware that, because of the way the act has been interpreted, you can actually go back quite some time, probably back to 1968, to unearth evidence of someone having been a victim of crime to bring that matter before the board, so sometimes it's necessary to go back into records. You can't really rely on the present recollection of any of the officers, for instance, of the police force and so on and there are impediments to gathering that information. You'll find there will be surviving records that can be released only with extensive blackouts, virtually rendering the documents almost unintelligible.
Mr McLean: So you're saying there should be some changes in the present legislation.
Mr Cameron: I think there could be some change in the way it's being interpreted. I don't know if that leads us to necessarily change the legislation or not.
I think there's been a tendency, especially during this initial period -- and I notice this, first of all, with the provincial freedom of information and now with the municipal -- during the first three or four years it's been in operation, people tend to take a very tight-fisted attitude towards it. There are real penalties for releasing information you're not entitled to release and virtually no reward for having released information. There's no carrot there, only a stick.
It brings to my mind the delays in the appeal process. You can launch an appeal. They have 30 days to give you an answer. You can launch an appeal if something's being withheld and the appeal -- you might as well forget it, it just takes so long. It's pointless. The appeal process could be faster.
Mr McLean: Okay. What's your opinion with regard to a bill for victim rights?
Mr Cameron: I think that would be of great assistance. By itself it won't be all that effective, but if it was in combination with some other initiatives -- not necessarily changes in the provincial law, but also federal law. I'd like to see the Limitations Act proposals advanced as rapidly as possible, especially with respect to sexual assault victims. I think that will do a great deal to make justice accessible.
I would also see like to see some changes to the Bankruptcy Act. The judgements for sexual assault should get the same treatment that the family law orders get under the Bankruptcy Act in that they continue to be enforceable even after a bankruptcy.
Mr McLean: That's good enough for that one. We're limited to only 10 minutes each, so we haven't got a lot of time.
Mr Cameron: You asked me some really good questions.
Mr McLean: Since you are a lawyer, I know you like to use up most of it by talking.
In 1991 the Solicitor General released a discussion paper entitled Political Activity Rights for Police Officers in Ontario: A Discussion Paper. Can you comment or do you have an opinion on whether police officers should be allowed to participate in politics?
Mr Cameron: I think they should.
Mr McLean: You didn't say much that time.
Mr Cameron: I don't want to tell them how to participate and I don't think anybody else should either.
Mr McLean: But let's define it. I think some of the recommendation was after their working hours or even during working hours.
Mr Cameron: I suppose they ought not to be using their own budgets to fax political messages around the countryside and things like that. I would regard myself limited in that respect whether there is a written law about that or not. I think common sense has to prevail, but I don't think there's a need for a specific inhibition of police officers to participate politically.
Mr McLean: Some municipalities have imposed outright bans.
Mr Cameron: I don't agree with that at all.
Mr McLean: Okay. The other question is have is, were you briefed by staff before you came here?
Mr Cameron: Briefly, yes.
Mr McLean: Employment equity: Are you aware of what position the Orillia Police Services Board is at with its police services?
Mr Cameron: I have no personal knowledge whatsoever of their employment equity plan. I think there must be some in place. There certainly are female police officers on the force and so on, but I only infer that they have something in place.
Mr McLean: They have submitted their plan and it's all in the works.
Mr Cameron: That's good. I'm glad to hear that.
Mr McLean: Do you know any of the members who are presently on the board?
Mr Cameron: No. Probably in passing I would have seen them, but I really don't know any of the members right now.
Mr McLean: Do you know the last appointment that was made?
Mr Cameron: Verna Hannaford?
Mr McLean: Yes.
Mr Cameron: I've talked to her. She's on the board of directors of the clinic I work for and so I've talked to her occasionally.
Mr McLean: Are you a member of the NDP party?
Mr Cameron: Yes, I am.
Mr McLean: I noticed your recommendations: Fayne Bullen, Terrence Hunter and Dennis Bailey. I kind of recognized that --
Mr Cameron: It could be that I'm an NDPer, eh?
Mr McLean: There wasn't much question about it.
Mr Jim Wiseman (Durham West): It's okay. The last two people appointed to the Durham board were both Liberals.
Mr McLean: Well, that's good. Thank you very much. I wish you well.
Mr Cameron: Sure.
The Chair: Mr Grandmaître, we're going back to you.
Mr Grandmaître: Now that you've admitted that you're an NDP -- and I'm not surprised -- what was your responsibility in the last election?
Mr Cameron: I was chief financial officer at Simcoe East for the Dennis Bailey campaign.
Mr Grandmaître: Oh, I see.
The Chair: I don't know if that's relevant.
Mr Grandmaître: I just wanted to follow up. You'll have a chance to question.
The Chair: There are restrictions on those kinds of questions.
Mr Grandmaître: Thank you, Mr Chair. I'm going to ask you the same question I asked a previous candidate. Do you think municipal councils should have more of a say in preparing the police budget? Municipal councils have to accept the police budget. Do you think this is right?
Mr Cameron: First of all, I don't know if I can entirely agree with you that they have to. Some negotiation obviously did take place in Toronto quite publicly. I'm quite aware of that.
Mr Grandmaître: They have to accept the budget. They can negotiate but they have to accept the bottom line.
Mr Cameron: So what you're saying is that there shouldn't be a police services board or that it shouldn't be distinguishable from the council.
Mr Grandmaître: No, I'm not asking you that. The composition of the police service boards in this province, as you know, are municipal appointments or cabinet appointments. But most municipalities in this province where there is a police force say, "Look, we're paying 80% of the cost of policing and we should have more of a say when it comes to budgeting."
I was the chairman of a police commission for seven years and I can tell you that it's very frustrating for a mayor to have to accept a budget and then tell his councillors: "Well, this is it. This is what we need for 1992. If not, the police services board will go to the Ontario Police Commission and have it stamped," literally stamped.
Mr Cameron: I can't comment on what happens at the Ontario Police Commission; I have no knowledge of how that works. I would assume that if it were a rubber stamp there would be something wrong with the way it was working. There should be a fair hearing for both sides, both parties, before that commission. I'm one of these people who's in favour of there being some sort of outside invigilation. If it's all done within the town council it's just a little bit too discretionary for my taste. I appreciate you may feel the way it's set up now errs on the other side, but it's hard to hit the nail right on the head. I think it's better to have some outside input into how they're managing a public responsibility like that.
Mr Grandmaître: I agree with you that we shouldn't have too much politics on the services board. I realize this, but the municipalities are very restricted when it comes to negotiating with the police services boards, and I find this somewhat offensive to taxpayers.
Mr Cameron: I feel it doesn't have to be bad in every single community. Even if you feel there's not a good relationship in some communities between the police services board and the municipality, it doesn't mean there has to be an antagonistic point of view. I approached any negotiation I had to take part in with the municipality with an open mind, not intending to hit people over the head with whatever rights I had. I'd only take a hard stand like that if I really thought there was an important issue of principle at stake. I wouldn't use that sort of power casually. I don't think that's a good way to do business. I don't see the need for it in Orillia, anyway.
Mr Grandmaître: How would you describe your police force?
Mr Cameron: I think it's a very ordinary police force. I don't think it's a stellar police force or an incompetent police force or anything. I think it's very ordinary. I've been dealing with them principally with respect to advocating for victims of crime and I've always found them to be helpful and direct, and increasingly so. There's been some change in the administration of the city of Orillia's police force and I think that's been a positive move, for the most part. I'm not criticizing the previous administration; I'm just saying they've accelerated what I think is a good trend. In terms of cooperation, they are somewhat limited by the freedom of information act. That's not really their fault.
Mr Grandmaître: Are they community-involved? Are they really part of the community?
Mr Cameron: I think so. There are a lot of different community organizations in Orillia that are community-involved. I think it's a community that has a lot of different motivated groups in it. I don't think the police stand out in comparison to those other groups, but I don't think they're behind either. I think they're pulling their weight.
Mr Grandmaître: How many female officers are part of your police force? Any females?
Mr Cameron: Yes. I know of two. I don't know all the officers on the force, but I know of two I frequently deal with.
Mr Grandmaître: Thank you. I've just found my notes. There are four.
Mr Cameron: There are four, eh? Okay, good.
Mr Grandmaître: I pass to my colleague.
Mr Cleary: I'd ask the same question I asked the previous witness, and that was about using more volunteers like auxiliary police. Do you support that or would you be opposed to that?
Mr Cameron: I wouldn't just casually throw volunteers into situations where it would require the kind of judgement only a trained police officer has, but having said that, I think there are roles for volunteers to play. I think it's Bert Ruhl at the OPP in Barrie who is now experimenting with volunteers in an innovative way. He is using community volunteers to follow up on property offence reports when there are not enough police officers to do the follow-up calls. He's had to deal with freedom of information concerns in order to do that, but I think he's overcoming those limitations. That was a very innovative approach, because it's actually doing work that would otherwise have to be done by a police officer. It's not just make-work; it's work that would otherwise be done by a police officer. Because they have a volunteer available they get to it more quickly, sooner than the police officers might get around to doing it. That's sometimes important in achieving an effective result.
Mr Cleary: You're exactly correct there. It's worked very effectively with the OPP for many years, yet now when you have volunteers in the community who want to do the same for municipalities, they have a hard time getting by the services board.
Mr Cameron: I have no knowledge of the history of how that's happened. I certainly have an open mind on the issue of volunteers. I think I know what the issues are, but I would first listen to what the chief of police had to say about what he wanted to use volunteers for. There's no point in asking him to do something he doesn't want to do in that area, in my view.
Mr Cleary: But you're appointed to do a job, to use your judgement, not what the chief of police says.
Mr Cameron: You can make volunteers available to him, but I think in terms of day-to-day use of those volunteers it has to be something he feels comfortable doing. I think that's the strength of Sergeant Ruhl's program, the fact that it's coming directly from the officers themselves and they have the expertise to know what jobs can be effectively turned over to volunteers. If they've not thought about it I would be willing to urge that volunteers be used, but if they have a thought-out position of how they want to use volunteers I certainly would listen to that first.
Mr Cleary: Many of these volunteers want to offer their time just like they would to a service club, to try to save the community money. I've talked to many of them over the past while. I guess I would ask everyone the same question, because I think it worked very effectively.
Mr Cameron: I definitely feel there's room for volunteers in very specific tasks where they can save officers time.
Mr Wiseman: Could you maybe give us a profile of the kind of community in Orillia and whether you foresee that it might be facing any problems?
Mr Cameron: There is, of course, a native community quite close by, so there are native people who live in town and so on. I don't really perceive it as a community with the same multiracial or multi-ethnic population you have here in Toronto, but I see it as being on the edge of that. I think it's going to become more of a thing than it has been in the past.
The reason I bring that up is because I think that when it comes to arranging a police force that has the right balance of individuals in it who reflect the community, you have to try to lead that process rather than follow it. I think a lot of the anguish that's happened in Toronto is the fact that the police force is seen as being reactive to these things. It's hard. You have to have lead time to do these things, because especially in a small force where there might be a slow turnover, the decisions you're making today have an effect for quite a few years because there's not that much turnover. You have to try to lead the process and you have to try to do it fairly.
Mr Wiseman: How do you see the Orillia police force in terms of community-based policing?
Mr Cameron: I wouldn't say they're the leading edge on community-based policing, particularly. They have some involvement in the community. It's fairly typical stuff. I would say there's nothing extraordinary going on there as far as community policing is concerned. That might be just a product of my selective knowledge of what they do in the community.
Mr Waters: This has been asked a couple of times now, and I was wondering if you could answer this question on the budgets. These community police boards are a new thing. Do you feel that having a cross-section of people, which everyone seems to be striving to have, will indeed reflect the feeling of the community when it comes to the budgets in a better way than it has in the past, where basically the chief or a small board goes forward and says, "This is what we want"? Now we're trying to expand it so that we have a cross-section of the whole community. Do you feel that would assist the community with its budget?
Mr Cameron: I think it brings more issues to the fore. It probably makes the consideration of the task of policing itself a little more complex or multifaceted. It's not as simple a task as it may have been once perceived. I think the budgeting process has to mirror the complexity of the task if the budget's going to be useful, otherwise it becomes something that doesn't really predict how spending's going to be done.
I've certainly worked in a lot of community boards where there's been a wide cross-section of individuals involved, and I would like to see even more involvement, for instance from the victim community, in police services boards. That would be an objective I would like to see, because I think these are, after all, the people who need the protection, who have historically needed the protection and who would be very aware of the adequacies or inadequacies of the police force. There are plenty of people functioning on community boards who would have the expertise in budgeting and would also have that other expertise to bring to the police services board, and I would like to see that happen increasingly. I think that's a benefit; I don't think it's a detriment at all.
Mr Waters: I'm going to go back, as I did with the last person, and ask about the training of officers, something I didn't ask her about although her board had the same need. I know from personal experience that Orillia has a water unit. I've seen them out in the narrows at Atherley. Do you think we have to get into more ongoing training of our community police officers, not only in the training of how to handle a firearm or things like that? How do you feel about the training?
Mr Cameron: I once had a chance to look at a very small piece of the syllabus at the Ontario Police College. They have a fairly sophisticated syllabus there, they teach a wide variety of things, but I think a lot of that stuff gets left in the classroom. People narrow their scope a bit once they get on the job. I'm going out on thin ice here, maybe based on not enough experience with the way police handle things. I think there are a lot of alternate solutions they miss. For instance, if they're looking for some charge, they'll lay it under the Criminal Code when it may be more appropriate to lay a provincial offence; it may actually be cheaper for the police department to do that, because it may not use up as much time in court or something.
I know they don't use all the training they do get now as thoroughly as they could. I think refresher courses would be good and it wouldn't be bad for them to educate themselves a little better about some of the social services that exist. I know in Barrie there was an effort to do that at the Kempenfelt centre a couple of years ago in an organized way. It was attended by some police forces, and by others not at all, so we got a clear idea of who was interested and who wasn't in learning about social agencies and what they could do for some of the people the police came in contact with. I think they should be positively encouraged to acquire that sort of information about resources outside the police force that could assist the people they come in contact with.
Mr Waters: In Toronto, the focus has been on accountability. It's been much written about in the paper and different people have talked about it. Because you're going to be on the board of a fairly small city, do you feel the accountability of the local police is adequate to the community, or do you feel there's better ways of dealing with that?
Mr Cameron: I think I would be better able to answer that question after I got on to the police services board. The structure of things is that the police are accountable to the police services board and sometimes things don't go beyond it. I think I would be disturbed if the police services board itself was cut out from certain information, but I'm not necessarily surprised if that information doesn't pass beyond the board and get into the public realm in every single case. I'm not in a position to judge it really, I feel, but I think accountability to the board should be there, and the act requires it, so I would certainly be prepared to expect that I would be kept informed.
Mr Waters: Thank you very much.
The Chair: Mrs Carter, did you have a question? No? That concludes the questioning. Mr Cameron, thank you for appearing here today.
Mr Cameron: Thank you.
The Chair: The next witness is John Gordon Jr. Mr Gordon is an intended appointee as a member of the Regional Municipality of Niagara Police Services Board. Welcome, Mr Gordon.
Mr John Gordon: Good morning.
The Chair: The half-hour review you were selected for was by the official opposition. Mr Bradley, you can begin the questioning.
Mr James J. Bradley (St Catharines): My first question, sir, is how did you obtain this appointment? Were you approached by someone to seek it?
Mr Gordon: In the native community in Fort Erie there was a request for an individual to put his or her name forward for the board, and when nobody had put his name forward, at that time I contacted the local member of provincial Parliament and put my name forward with all the necessary information.
Mr Bradley: When they did so, did they indicate they wanted any special qualifications or anything for the job?
Mr Gordon: Whenever the information got to me, the qualifications I understood were that you would have common sense, be able to budget, know the duties and work with the board of directors to maintain the police services in the area -- be involved in the community, basically, and have a good head on your shoulders.
Mr Bradley: When they approached you about this -- and this is not a reflection on you personally; it's a general policy -- did anybody ask if you were a municipal councillor at the time?
Mr Gordon: At the time they approached me, I'm trying to think if I was a municipal councillor. I didn't get re-elected in the 1991 election, but --
Mr Bradley: You did not get re-elected?
Mr Gordon: No. At this time I am not a municipal councillor.
Mr Bradley: The reason I asked that question was that the previous government -- not that every government has to follow that policy, but governments have generally followed a policy of not appointing municipal councillors as such to these, and when I read the résumé, it looked as though you were still a municipal councillor. I just wondered if they had changed that.
Mr Gordon: As with all politicians, we sometimes lose elections.
Mr Bradley: Don't we all know that. I can believe that.
You know, as I do, just from reading the things that have happened in the Niagara region -- it's a very unfair question when a person is first coming on the board; it's a better question perhaps three years from now. What do you see as the main challenges facing the Niagara Regional Police at this time, the problems and challenges they have, from what you've read and what I've read?
Mr Gordon: I think one of their first goals, and one of my first goals on the board, would be to help the image of the Niagara Regional Police Force, to bring it back to a strong police force which is community-minded and able to provide the protection necessary and to eliminate all the questions that were raised by the Colter inquiry and just get over that and put it behind us and move on in a new manner in a better way for the community.
Mr Bradley: Another perhaps difficult question -- I'd hate to be in your position if somebody had asked me this question, but no doubt you've read a few things before you got here. There have been certain restrictions contemplated for the Toronto police force in terms of their pursuit of criminals. It's unfair because you haven't sat on the board of commissioners, but just from your general sense of things, from what you've read, do you think that police need more restraint -- I guess "restraint" is the best way of putting it -- or more restrictions on the way they can pursue criminals in the province of Ontario?
Mr Gordon: I think they should be able to pursue criminals in a manner that is safe and does not in any way jeopardize any innocent person's safety. I think that as long as those guidelines, those restrictions are followed, they should be able to pursue criminals in whatever manner, as long as they don't jeopardize the safety of individuals.
Mr Bradley: You mentioned that the native community in Niagara was approached about this. Do you, from your experience, know of problems encountered by people from the native community in the Niagara region in the past? I really don't want to get into the present or the future but the past, so it will be easier to answer. Have there been problems that you think need to be addressed?
Mr Gordon: I don't know of any specific problems I could deal with on the police services board, but there are cultural differences that many people aren't aware of. An example would be that whenever a student, an individual or young person is being talked to by a police officer on the street, the police officer is looking at him, and a native person is taught in his or her culture out of respect to look towards the ground and not look the other person in the eye. The police officer would then say, "Look me in the eye when I'm talking to you," as many parents do, thinking that out of respect they should be looked at. That's a cultural difference and those kind of differences need to be looked at and brought to the board.
Mr Bradley: That's an interesting observation, because I'm sure many officers without adequate training would not be aware of that, and that's something that can be brought to the board.
In terms of financing of the police force, you're also aware that there is always a controversy going on about how much money is spent by police forces in the province, particularly when the provincial government is not giving them a lot of money because it doesn't have a lot of money to give out at this time. So it's obviously going to restrict how much money it's going to give out to the municipality. The municipality is concerned that its budget is there. Do you see yourself as being somewhat a financial watchdog on the police force as well?
Mr Gordon: In my present position I deal with a budget every day of the week.
Mr Bradley: As you would on council too.
Mr Gordon: On council I deal with a rather large budget. I think the budget has to be set so that it does not jeopardize public safety, and so that the police force can offer the services that are necessitated in the area, but at the same time, not go overboard on extravagant administrative items. Some restraints have to be put in those areas which are not areas of public safety and prevention of crime.
Mr Bradley: This touches a little on a previous question I asked. There's been a lot of controversy about police chases of a vehicle, where there's someone who has committed a crime or is suspected of committing a crime and a police chase ensues. If you think of all the chases that take place there may not be many problems, but occasionally there's an accident. An innocent person is involved in it, or perhaps a police officer is injured, or perhaps the person being pursued for what you'd call not the most serious of crimes is badly injured or there's a death. What is your general view on police vehicle chases?
Mr Gordon: Perhaps you also missed one thing: that the police cruiser's damage affects the budget.
Mr Bradley: Good point.
Mr Gordon: If the officer can pursue a criminal or a suspected criminal in a safe manner that won't cause harm to himself, the vehicle or any other pedestrians or innocent victims, then I feel he should pursue that criminal. If at that time he sees that he cannot pursue him with safety in mind, he should eliminate the chase and further investigate and catch the criminal at a later date.
Mr Bradley: The provincial government was criticized in the local newspaper for making patronage appointments of well-known New Democrats to the police commission. I take it that you wouldn't fit in that category.
Mr Gordon: At this time, I'm not a member of any party. I was previously a member of the Liberal Party.
Mr Bradley: I knew that. That's why I said you wouldn't fit this category.
In regard to Fort Erie itself and that end of the peninsula, there has been a view -- I just wanted to tell you that you appoint some good people. In Fort Erie and Port Colborne, let's say that end of the peninsula, there's been a concern expressed that the police services are not as good or as efficient as they have been in the north part of Niagara peninsula. I don't know how valid that is, but I know that people down in that area who haven't had people on the commission have said it's a problem. Is that still a problem, in your view?
Mr Gordon: That is a valid point. One of the councillors in the previous election had mentioned that his main goal was to bring a 24-hour police station to Fort Erie, which we don't have at present. Fort Erie has a population of only 24,000, but we deserve as much service as any other community. I think Fort Erie and Port Colborne are not getting the kind of service they desire, especially in the Crystal Beach area. That was one question a lot of community residents brought up when I sat on council, that they didn't feel they were getting adequate policing.
The Chair: Mr Cleary, you have one question, a quick one.
Mr Cleary: John, thank you for appearing this morning. I see by the information we have on you that you've been a great volunteer in the community for many years. As I asked some of the previous witnesses, the information I have is that volunteers like auxiliary police aren't looked on favourably by police services boards. I'd just like your comments on that.
Mr Gordon: I think the purchase of a $10 plaque often goes farther than the amount of salary paid to a regular constable. Volunteers play a very important part in the police force. As the other candidates or other individuals have said, I question their ability to go out and actually enforce the laws, but in other categories I think they're used very well. As I said, I think a $9.99 plaque is a lot better than $40,000 a year.
Mr McLean: Welcome to the committee, John. I was looking at your employment history, and you were with the Prudential Insurance Co for some time. I see your résumé says you're now an accountant.
Mr Gordon: I'm a bookkeeper; fancy title, accountant.
Mr McLean: There's quite a difference. I was wondering when you went back to school to get your CA, but I guess --
Mr Gordon: No sir, not chartered accountant. "Accountant" is the title I was given. That wasn't my choice.
Mr McLean: Anyhow, I wish you well. The region of Niagara municipality is one of the larger forces in the province and four of these seven are appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council. Will you make that complement seven now or is there still a shortage on the board?
Mr Gordon: I think I would make the final, fourth appointment from the province.
Mr McLean: As a municipal councillor you would be somewhat aware of the workings of a police services board, I'm sure.
Mr Gordon: I was aware of it but not fully aware of the details of it.
Mr McLean: I noticed that the number of females percentagewise is very low. What would be your aim as a commissioner on the board to change that?
Mr Gordon: I think the barriers to females being hired as police officers and also the barriers for promotion should be eliminated. That would all fall under the employment equity plan. I just feel they should be brought in. The only people who should be made police officers are those who are qualified and meet every aspect regardless of employment equity. If we can fulfil employment equity goals, timetables and schedules while at the same time maintaining a qualified police force then I say we should go for it.
Mr McLean: That's an excellent statement. On the political activity of police officers, one of the previous appointees indicated that there should be no problem with that. I see no problem with that. Do you have a view on that?
Mr Gordon: I don't feel they should be able to do it while they're employed or while they're actively policing. But on their own free time I think they should be more than free to do what they wish.
Mr McLean: You've read in the last while about the use of pepper spray. I don't know whether you're familiar with what's gone on with regard to that, but would you as a member of the board encourage that, provided all necessary precautions are met?
Mr Gordon: Pepper spray, TASER guns, stunning devices, all these devices should be looked at as an alternative to weapons that kill. This type of weapon needs to be looked at; all the ramifications of using it need to be looked at, and at that time I can make a better decision. Right now I don't have all that information. I think alternatives to force should be looked at, but at the same time not jeopardizing the safety of the police officer.
Mr McLean: How many meetings do they have in a week? This is a large force. They have to meet more than once a week, don't they? Do you have any idea?
Mr Gordon: I honestly have no idea.
Mr McLean: Do you have an idea what a police services board commissioner would get in salary?
Mr Gordon: I honestly have no idea.
Mr McLean: You're well qualified, and I wish you all the best.
Mr Gordon: Thank you very much.
The Chair: I believe Mrs Carter indicated she had a question.
Ms Carter: You already said you think police should have training in understanding different races. Do you think it's important to have people on agencies, boards and commissions such as the police services boards who do represent the different cultural backgrounds we have in Ontario?
Mr Gordon: It most certainly is important to meet the employment equity that's being brought down or has been passed to the Police Services Act. If we're going to succeed in community policing, we need representation so that all members of the community can associate with the police force. Yes, I would say it is important.
Ms Carter: So that all points of view should be represented.
Mr Gordon: Correct.
Ms Carter: What kinds of advantages would come from this in terms of actual police functioning?
Mr Gordon: I think once we have a police force that's representative of the community, the community will take that police force in and associate with it instead of just looking at them as the people with the blue suits and the badges who drive around in police cars, and trying to avoid them. I think you take them more into the community, so it's important to see a representation of all types of races and cultures.
Ms Carter: Would you say that some of the problems we've had recently in Toronto, for example, are due to not having that kind of integrated police force and boards to go with it?
Mr Gordon: I don't think we can say the problems were created by that. I know Toronto has great problems and decisions to make in that regard, but I don't think that was a major problem. I think it played a role in it, but I think there are many more pieces to that puzzle than just a representative police force.
Ms Carter: Does your local police services board have a reasonable representation on it now, or do you need to see a big change?
Mr Gordon: I don't see many police officers, so I honestly don't know. I see them around but I don't really have any knowledge of who is on the police force.
The Chair: Any additional questions? Mr Marchese.
Mr Marchese: The issue of relations between the police and racial groups continues to be an ongoing concern. Do you think race relations training for police officers is important?
Mr Gordon: It is a must. It should be made mandatory right in the training so you can understand other cultures and other backgrounds and know how to deal with them so you do not offend other cultures and create more problems.
Mr Marchese: So that would be one way of getting the police and the different communities to understand each other better. Are there other things one could do, police and community or any third party, to bring the two closer together?
Mr Gordon: Basically, the police force itself can do more to be active in the community. The police need to become active in every aspect of the community, not just when they have that uniform on. They have to understand that they are police officers 24 hours a day in a community, that every place they go in the community they are police officers and have to act as such. I think that's the way to intertwine the community and the police force.
Mr Marchese: It's quite clear that different people have quite polarized views on the whole issue of the police and how they are dealing with racial minorities or other groups in society, and sometimes those extreme views can be a problem. What do you suggest as a way of bringing the conflicting interests or people together as a way of beginning to solve some of those differences?
Mr Gordon: I would say they all have to sit down and talk and see what their goals and objectives are. I think if they all found that they had common goals and objectives they could work towards those. Regardless of how they worked or how radical their views were on racial issues within the police force, I think everybody could be working towards a common goal. I think once that's set out, everybody can work towards it.
The Chair: Anybody else? Mr Waters.
Mr Waters: Actually you did ask what I was going to ask, but it's okay. I always find something else, and it's the training. I think I would want to know your opinion on training, because it appears that a lot of officers, especially long-time members of forces, don't regularly go back for retraining and upgrading. I am just wondering what your opinion would be.
Mr Gordon: I think training's important to everyone. An athlete doesn't stay an athlete if he doesn't train constantly, and I don't feel a police officer should stay a police officer if he's not trained constantly. I think all officers, regardless of how long they've been on the force, should go for training on a consistent basis. That should be offered regardless of how much it costs or who's footing the bill. That's important to the community and we should be training our officers.
The Chair: Mr McLean didn't use up all of his time and he has a quick question.
Mr McLean: I really have something I want to put on the record for your use at a later date. Your region has a population of 360,000. You have 592 uniformed officers and 230 civilian staff, for a total of 822 personnel, with a budget of $57 million.
York region, the next one we're going to interview, has a population of 504,831. It has 684 officers, 113 civilians and a budget of $55 million for 797 personnel. You have in your region approximately 30 more personnel, with a lot less population, and your budget is $2 million more than what York's is. There are some statistics that you can take to the board. You'll find an interesting reaction.
Mr Gordon: Thank you.
The Chair: Thank you, Mr Gordon. That concludes the questioning.
Mr Wiseman: I'm not sure what your point was there, but --
Mr McLean: It is running a lot more reasonable costs.
Mr Wiseman: Or Niagara is doing a lot better job policing.
The Chair: We can pursue that question perhaps in more depth with our next witness.
The Chair: Ms Buck, would you come forward, please. Ms Buck is an intended appointee as a member of the Regional Municipality of York Police Services Board.
Welcome to the committee, Ms Buck. We'll begin the questioning with Mr McLean.
Mr McLean: Welcome to the committee this morning. I see by some of the information we have that you have a long history of political experience. How many years did you serve on the police commission?
Mrs Buck: I didn't serve on the police commission. York region's police department is 20 years old. Prior to that we had 14 municipalities, and each municipality had a police committee, so I was a member of the police committee for one term. I was chairman of the police committee for a second term of municipal council. That would be four years. I was also a member of an organization called the police governing authorities and on the executive of that for one term.
Mr McLean: The statistics that I had just read out there a short time ago are certainly an indication that the York board is running, on a per capita basis, on a lot less than what the Niagara region is. Some may say, "Is that relevant?" I would anticipate that York region is totally built up now, is it not?
Mrs Buck: No, it's a vast region. There's far more of it that is still rural than is built up. We have nine municipalities. It's huge. It goes from Steeles Avenue to Lake Simcoe.
Mr McLean: Right. Which would be the area that is rural?
Mrs Buck: King township, huge areas of Markham and Vaughan, even Richmond Hill has huge rural areas surrounding it. Newmarket and Aurora are the only totally urban municipalities. Whitchurch-Stouffville is almost totally rural, with hamlets and villages. Stouffville is probably a town now. Georgina is a huge cottage area and rural area.
Mr McLean: Are you involved at the present time in any other volunteer organizations?
Mrs Buck: No, I'm not.
Mr McLean: Did you apply for this position on your own, or were you asked if you were interested?
Mrs Buck: There was an inquiry made within the region, because the person who is leaving the board is female and they wanted to continue the opportunities for women, so there was an inquiry made and my name was put forward. I was asked if I was interested and I was interested, so I submitted my résumé.
Mr McLean: What changes would you like to see made, if any, to the way the police services board operates and in particular the way the regional police force is operating?
Mrs Buck: In particular in York region?
Mr McLean: Yes.
Mrs Buck: I think we have a very challenging area. I was an NDP candidate in the last federal election, before you ask.
Mr McLean: I already knew that.
Mrs Buck: I spent eight months, from May until November, knocking on doors throughout the region. We have people in our region from every corner of the globe. There's no particular minority that is hugely represented. So the challenge I think would be to keep the contacts open and working with the people in the community. The people who have come to live in our area are from countries where they had perhaps not the same amount of experience with an organized police department as we do, and I think it's important to help them to realize the police department is there for the protection of the community so they will trust the police department.
We're not Toronto, Toronto is not Los Angeles, York region is not Toronto; we don't have the same problems. I think most communities have to be prepared to respond to the particular situations in their own area and look down the road and see what problems might develop and be prepared to make sure they don't develop, maybe.
Mr McLean: That leads me to my final question. That is, with regard to force to apprehend, could I have your view on what types of force you would indicate should be -- there has been a lot of discussion on deadly force and how they're apprehending people. What's your view on how the police should be doing that?
Mrs Buck: I think there are certain situations, and thank God we don't have them too often in York region, where the police have to be prepared to use unusual force. I don't think any police officer draws his gun without very serious thought in this country. I don't believe it's a casual use by any means. But we give them guns, and coming from where I do, I found that a little hard to accept. We give them big, dangerous weapons, and then when they find themselves threatened and use the weapon they're hugely criticized. I think it's a dangerous job in some situations. Preferably, and I'm sure from the individual officer's point of view, he would rather not have to live with perhaps having killed someone with a gun.
Mr McLean: Do you think a police officer would be better if he didn't have a weapon?
Mrs Buck: No, I'm not saying that. They've had them for a long, long time. I'm not saying they should have them taken away. I'd probably be taken out and have something serious done to me if I suggested we should take their weapons away from them, but the other thought I have is that there isn't enough understanding in the community of the nature of a policeman's job. It's not a nice job. It's not a pleasant job. It's at the worst dangerous and at the best very tedious and boring, but in between there's sort of a them-and-us situation. Most of us don't appreciate being stopped, even if it's just for speeding.
I think there's a need in these times to develop an understanding in the community of the nature of a policeman's job. I think it's people who maintain law and order; I don't think it's police departments. If people didn't respect law and order, then there are no numbers of police who would be able to do it for us. We have to maintain that respect in the community at all costs and whatever can be done at the police level to maintain that respect for the police department.
I tend to run on. I know you have a limit to the time.
Mr Frankford: Can you give some indication of some peculiarities of a region like York for the policing problems you have there: what types of crime, what's the balance of crime versus traffic, and things like that?
Mrs Buck: I asked once, when the budget was being presented at the region, what the ratio of crime was, and by far -- about 75% or something like that -- was traffic problems; another 12% was domestic violence, which no one can predict; and a very small percentage was actual criminal activity.
I think the criminal activity has probably increased. When you have a recession, people are out of work, and then criminal thefts and that sort of thing always increase. We also have a lot more industries in the region, so I would imagine that the criminal activity has increased. But by far the largest percentage is still traffic and domestic violence. I don't see anything in our headlines to indicate that anything different has been happening, because we don't see everything in our newspapers.
Mr Frankford: Can I perhaps then move to the non-crime aspects? Does the traffic aspect occupy a police board's time very much or is that something which routinely is taken for granted?
Mrs Buck: Money has to be made available for things like the Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere program, for example, and when they're preparing a budget they have to consider what their priorities are. The RIDE program was very effective in York region, as it was in most areas of the province. Ten or 15 years ago we were losing a tremendous number of young people in traffic accidents. I haven't seen nearly as much as that in the last 10 years either.
Mr Frankford: I could see that some of that could be addressed by much more social approaches.
Mrs Buck: Not having the availability of a car may be a factor.
Mr Frankford: Exactly. If one could be designing cities differently -- I don't know if you're familiar with Andres Duany, a rather eminent urban planner who says that we're designing our cities and suburbs to produce happy cars. I think there's a lot in that.
Mrs Buck: Oh, yes.
Mr Frankford: We allow them to flow smoothly and there's very little in the way of intrinsic barriers to speeding. I know this maybe is a bit off the conventional activity of police commissions, but I wonder if you have any thoughts on whether that's something you might actually be getting into.
Mrs Buck: Without knowing exactly whether there is a serious problem, I think the RIDE program had a spillover effect at other times of the year as well. People are much more conscious of the community's revulsion against drinking and driving and causing deaths by being behind the wheel of a car under the influence of drink. I think there's a much stronger reaction from the community towards this, and that makes everyone conscious that it's an anti-social thing to do, so that reduces the deaths as well.
Mr Frankford: I don't know the figures and I would be interested in looking into it, but I would suspect that a lot of the --
Mrs Buck: The time spent?
Mr Frankford: No, the bad consequences of cars are sort of urban design things. I would think in smaller hamlets that it's just how stop signs are designed and perhaps the police activity would be stopping people making illegal turns and investigating crimes or accidents that occur when --
Mrs Buck: It's the traffic engineers who determine on the basis of their technical knowledge.
Mr Frankford: Exactly. I think the problem, as Duany would point out, is that they are designing places for happy cars, that they are not concerned with the consequences. I think it's quite interesting to look at the Toronto Star right here and ask all about the terrible driving habits here, which I think is a wonderful piece of victim-blaming, ignoring the design aspect and ignoring the fact that the Toronto Star on Saturdays is advertising cars that --
Mrs Buck: Are hazardous.
Mr Frankford: Their car writers are writing about how they will go from zero to 60 in five seconds or whatever, as though this is an actual virtue.
Let's move on to the domestic violence side. Did you see any things you would like to encourage to prevent there?
Mrs Buck: I think all over society is becoming very much aware of the extent of domestic violence and that it's not acceptable. The police are obviously getting the same message; they've never wanted to be involved in domestic violence. They get a call to a home and they go there and the person who attacks them is the wife who's being abused. So you can't really blame them for an attitude of turning a blind eye, because of their experience.
At the same time, everybody has to become aware. Women have to become aware that they don't have to accept it. The police have to become aware that this community wants them to charge this individual who's responsible. I think the kind of publicity this problem is getting in the community can only help to improve things. We might see a lot more people in court charged and we might see a lot more women not able to let the husband get away with it. I tend to favour that, that women have to be encouraged and protected, helped and supported to stop an abusive spouse.
Mr Frankford: One final question. Would you like to comment on the need for shelters and places where people can get away from the domestic violence?
Mrs Buck: Yes. We were the first town in the region of York, I'm very proud to tell you, to have a shelter, the Yellow Brick House. As a member of a mostly male council, I suspect I had a bit to do with resisting the neighbourhood opposition, shall we say. But I'm glad to say also that there are a number of others that have been provided since Aurora has shown the way.
The Vice-Chair (Mr McLean): Ms Carter, for a short period.
Ms Carter: Could you tell us something about your views on employment equity? You said you will be replacing another woman, so we're not actually progressing to more women on the board because of your appointment. Is progress being made in that kind of direction? What do you feel about it?
Mrs Buck: I think it's a matter of encouraging women to think of themselves in those roles. That's not going to be done overnight. I think the younger women are going to be much more inclined to see themselves as a member of a police services board. It's been a male prerogative for so many years.
Ms Carter: Of course there are the other groups that are designated, the visible minorities, disabled people and aboriginal people.
Mrs Buck: They have to be encouraged too. As I say, I think it's education and it's going to be a generational thing that's going to take time; people have reached an age of maturity where they might have something to contribute and all their lives have not thought of themselves in that role. The opportunities are there today.
Ms Carter: So you don't think there's anything much the board can do in the short term to encourage people like that to apply? You think time will take care of it?
Mrs Buck: No. When you're looking to appointing people to a board, politicians are looking to appoint people. The appointed people are not accountable. It's the elected people who are accountable. So it stands to reason that elected people will look for competent people wherever they find them, because the elected people answer for the decisions of the appointed people.
Ms Carter: Of course we have to learn to see the competence behind the different front to --
Mrs Buck: Yes, give them opportunities to acquire that competence. When I started, there weren't that many.
The Chair: You have 30 seconds.
Mr Marchese: I just want to make a point. I saw a television program where police were talking about how things have changed in the last 10 years. In the past they would have asked the wrong questions, "What did you do to provoke something?" not understanding the nature of victimization, believing that if women don't want to get out of a situation that was their tough luck. The policemen have said they've come a long way from having such views 10 years ago, moving ahead to having a much better understanding of how abuse can happen to women and what they need to do about it. I see that as a very encouraging thing. Hopefully we can move the police force to move much more progressively in that direction.
Mrs Buck: We're moving all the time.
The Chair: I am sorry, Ms Buck, we've run over time on that.
Mr Grandmaître: That's a good question.
Mrs Buck: Do you want me to answer it?
Mr Grandmaître: No. Maybe if I have time later on we can go back. Here's my pet question: You have a great deal of municipal politics experience. You were a councillor, a reeve, a mayor. I'm sure you're quite aware of what AMO is saying at the present time, or has been saying for the last nearly 10 years, that municipal councils don't have too much input into police budgeting. What are your thoughts? Do you think municipal councils should be more involved in police budgeting?
Mrs Buck: Not in preparing the budget, no, but there is an opportunity for councillors when the chairman of the police commission and the police chief attend council and make a presentation of the budget. Then the elected people have had an opportunity to analyse it and ask whatever questions they might have. I've found in my own experience that I was probably the only one who was asking questions, like what percentage of their work related to traffic, crime or domestic violence. I was a bit of a villain for having the gall to ask those questions.
Mr Grandmaître: That's good.
Mrs Buck: There was a feeling that you didn't question the police budget or the police chief. You just gave them whatever they asked for and got on with the other things you had to deal with. Of course, they have a lot to think about. The police board is given the responsibility to do these things. Hopefully they will do it with consideration for the taxpayers. They need to do a good job and to have the resources to do a good job, but make the best use of those resources.
I think we've been too well off in Ontario for too long. Now this shortage of funds may not be a bad thing to teach us all to make the best use of the money that's available.
Mr Grandmaître: I agree with you and I think the same thing is happening with school boards.
Mrs Buck: Absolutely. It's taken too long.
Mr Grandmaître: Municipalities are tax collectors and have very little to say in school budgeting or budgets.
Mrs Buck: Or programs.
Mr Grandmaître: I find it very unfair, because when municipal politicians knock on doors they get the brunt of everybody's dissatisfaction. Everything is blamed on the councillor, mayor or reeve, because maybe they're the only ones knocking on doors. I think it's very unfair. AMO has been asking for some kind of change of attitude, or even amendments to the Municipal Act or the Police Act and so on and so forth, but with very little success. I find this very unfair.
Anyway, having said this, as you know, there's a lot of youth unrest. One of the causes is lack of summer employment and lack of community programs, youth programs. A little while ago you pointed out how important it was to understand your community. I think you're absolutely right. Do you think your police force really understands your community and how it can improve this relationship, especially at the youth level? Are they very competent or not so competent?
Mrs Buck: There isn't any feeling of concern in the community that they're not competent. I personally think it's a little early to suggest that the riot on Centre Island had anything to do with youth unemployment; they're not out of school yet. I think youth are better off than many adults in terms of the job opportunities, because employers are having to go to young people whom they can pay less and hire them on part-time. So I think the job opportunities are there for the young people because of the economy. I think it's ridiculous to suggest that the riot on the island was because of lack of job opportunities. It's the beginning of June, for goodness' sake. They're not even out of school yet.
I think maybe we're in too great a rush all the time to take responsibility as elected people for every little thing that goes wrong out there. I think when you get 3,000 kids together on a hot summer day, something's liable to happen.
Mr Grandmaître: What is your police force doing with the youth population in York?
Mrs Buck: What are they doing with them?
Mr Grandmaître: Yes.
Mrs Buck: I don't know. I think they're fairly law-abiding people. We've been reading about it. I read the local newspapers. The papers aren't the way they used to be either. They give us a sort of police brief, a little strip of charges that were laid in different communities. I don't think we have a problem, or we would know about it. I don't think there's a serious problem. We have all kinds of opportunities. It's a growing area, the fastest-growing area in Canada.
Mr Grandmaître: It is.
Mrs Buck: There are malls and new industries moving out of Toronto into our region. There are job opportunities out there. Probably if we had a problem, it would be a regional transportation system that would allow them to get wherever they want to go without having to get into a car. We don't have a public transit system that would serve that purpose.
Mr Grandmaître: Is your police force involved in community policing?
Mrs Buck: We have an auxiliary police force.
Mr Grandmaître: You do?
Mrs Buck: Yes. They're used in things like parades and fairs and that sort of thing. I think if you have a lot of that kind of activity going on, you have work for them to do. Because we're a new police force, we have three new police headquarters. The training facilities are provided in the headquarters; it's very up to date. I don't know how we managed to cost less than Niagara Falls, because they haven't gone without too many things. We have a marine detachment too, on Lake Simcoe. I think they were even talking about a plane a couple of years ago.
Mr Grandmaître: In the last 12 months I've had the opportunity to meet and to talk to police chiefs in Ontario. The perception out there is that we're appointing people to police service boards who are anti-police. Do you believe this?
Mrs Buck: No. But we had a policeman on the council, and there's a feeling that because of the nature of their work, the police are sort of isolated. The humour they share is humour that you might not think is funny. They have to joke about the things that happen in their job, but if anybody outside the police department heard them joking, they just would not think it was very humorous. Their wives have to associate with each other. In their leisure time they can only associate with each other because of the nature of their work.
I think there's a real need for the community to understand that and perhaps somehow or other bridge that and make them realize that we don't just support their work because we see them in nice blue uniforms visiting the kindergarten class; that we know what their job is, that we know what a terrible job it is and fully appreciate it. You can't compensate with money for the kind of job they do. Sometimes we're inclined to think that will make up for the kind of work they have to do.
Mr Grandmaître: Any possibility of running again?
Mrs Buck: Running? For what? The last couple of years I've had some family problems. I had to go to Scotland for six months. I have a little grandson who has cancer and isn't getting better, so I've had some family problems that have taken up a lot of my time.
Mr Grandmaître: But you're still involved in your community.
Mrs Buck: Yes, I can't get it out of my system.
Mr Grandmaître: Good luck to you.
The Chair: Thank you very much, Mrs Buck. That concludes the questioning.
Mrs Buck: Finished?
The Chair: You're finished. We wish you well.
Members of the committee, our next witness is Christine Jenkins. I don't think she's arrived yet and there's some concern about whether she's going to arrive. The ministry has been unable to contact her, although the clerk's office talked to her this week and indicated she was going to be present. Is she present?
Clerk of the Committee (Mr Douglas Arnott): Not yet.
The Chair: The one thing I could mention for the benefit of members is that next week we're meeting to discuss draft reports on a number of the agencies we've reviewed. Perhaps David can quickly mention the agencies we'll be looking at.
Mr David Pond: Draft reports on the Ontario Municipal Board, TVO, the Community Advisory Board of Brockville Psychiatric Hospital and the Liquor Licence Board of Ontario, as well as the paper I've prepared reviewing the material we received from agencies which have been reviewed by this committee since 1988. As you recall, they were all asked to prepare a response to the committee's recommendations and I went through the material and prepared a summary of their responses for you to look at.
The Chair: Hopefully members will have an opportunity to review those drafts before next week and we'll come prepared to finalize, hopefully, all of them.
One question I want to pose for your consideration is whether or not you want to have those deliberations conducted in camera or in open committee. Traditionally, historically, for the most part they've been done in camera, but I'm just looking for direction from committee members. How would you wish to proceed? Any comments?
Mr Frankford: I think we should probably continue that tradition.
The Chair: Anyone have any objections or concerns about those deliberations taking place in camera?
Mr Grandmaître: I don't see any problems.
The Chair: I don't want to have anyone complain next week, because we're going to provide direction to Hansard that we don't have anyone here to take notes or have an electronic Hansard present. If no one has any objections, we'll meet in camera.
Mr Waters: What you're saying is that we will have discussions in camera, and then if we decide to put anything on the record we can do that later? As a group we would make those decisions or --
The Chair: If you wanted to do it on that particular day it might be difficult making arrangements, but --
Mr McLean: The problem so far has been Hansard, hasn't it? Really, what we're going to do is review what we've done?
The Chair: Well, we're hoping to finalize. We're having the draft reports and hopefully we can finalize. There may be some concerns that arise, especially in respect to, say, the OMB, which we haven't had a lot of discussion about, but I would think that we'll be able to finalize at least two or three of those reports.
Mr McLean: I don't know why we'd have it in camera. It just doesn't make sense.
Mr Marchese: I'm also sympathetic to the idea of having it public and deciding at any point, if we consider there is something that should not be in public, to leave it for the private session we could have at the end of it. I recommend that we do as much as we possibly can in public. It would be useful to have other views from other members.
Mr Frankford: We have done this before. I forget which.
The Chair: Well, we've had this discussion before.
Mr Frankford: The OMB I think was one.
The Chair: We ultimately ended up having a public session. All right then, I guess we're going public.
Mr Waters: I believe, Mr Chair, you brought up something last week, I think it was, about Ms Wexler and her expenses, which we checked into. Apparently, when we checked into this, she hasn't submitted her forms, but indeed it is a policy and the minister directed the ministry some time ago that if someone submits a claim, it is to pay it. They have been in touch with her this week, and as soon as she gets the forms, then she will indeed receive compensation in the appropriate manner.
The Chair: Excellent. Thank you.
I'm not sure what we should do at this juncture, because it's already noon hour.
Mr Grandmaître: I propose that we adjourn.
The Chair: First, before we adjourn, we had better deal with the intended appointees we reviewed this morning. Can we have a motion?
Mr Waters: Mr Chair, she's here.
Ms Christine Jenkins: Good afternoon.
The Chair: Grand entrance, Ms Jenkins. Have a seat right there. That's fine.
Christine Jenkins is an intended appointee as a member of the Town of St Marys Police Services Board. Ms Jenkins, since you've missed what's gone on here earlier, this is a 30-minute review, 10 minutes to each party represented on the committee. You were chosen for review by the Conservative Party and I'm going to look to Mr McLean to begin his questioning.
Mr McLean: Welcome, Miss Jenkins. You worked at the YMCA in Barrie some time ago.
Ms Jenkins: That's right.
Mr McLean: Do you have connections in that area?
Ms Jenkins: Just personal connections.
Mr McLean: No family connections.
Ms Jenkins: No, none at all.
Mr McLean: I see. How did you know there was an opening on the St Marys Police Services Board?
Ms Jenkins: I read the advertisement in the St Marys newspaper last September.
Mr McLean: What community involvement have you had with regard to the town of St Marys?
Ms Jenkins: I'm currently on the St Marys recreation department community council, I guess you would call it, advisory committee, and we meet once a month to discuss issues surrounding recreation. I also have been involved in teaching adolescent leadership courses in the town of St Marys for recreation.
Mr McLean: How long have you lived in St Marys?
Ms Jenkins: Almost two years.
Mr McLean: Two years. Where did you teach before? Was it 1988 to the present that you've been at the Perth county board?
Ms Jenkins: I didn't. This is my first employment as a teacher.
Mr McLean: That was in 1988.
Ms Jenkins: That's right.
Mr McLean: Are you a member of any political party?
Ms Jenkins: No, I'm not.
Mr McLean: Were you?
Ms Jenkins: No.
Mr McLean: The other question I have is with regard to the board itself. Are you aware of the size of the board?
Ms Jenkins: At present it has two committee members from the civilian population and two elected officials from town council.
Mr McLean: Do you know any of the members who are on the board?
Ms Jenkins: No, not personally.
Mr McLean: What is your objective in becoming a member? Do you have some specific input that you would like to see happen within the community?
Ms Jenkins: I would like to have a voice in my community, and I'd like to be involved in my community for a meaningful purpose. I also consider myself an advocate of women's rights, which I don't always think are adequately represented on town council or in other municipal functions.
Mr McLean: There are eight uniformed officers. Are any of them female?
Ms Jenkins: Not that I'm aware of, no.
Mr McLean: I would presume there's not a great turnover of police officers with that number.
Ms Jenkins: I couldn't answer that. I don't know.
Mr McLean: No. The other question I have is with regard to the use of force within police services across the province. There's been a lot of discussion, as you have read and I have read. Do you have any determined attitudes that you would like to see changed with regard to the force that police officers use?
Ms Jenkins: Having little background with police work and police problems in St Marys, I'm not really prepared to answer that question. I presume that more effective training would be the first route of change and if force was still necessary, then it's certainly reasonable to explore other avenues of force, but I can't comment on which ones are appropriate at this time.
Mr McLean: Since you're involved in the judicial system -- that's why you applied -- do you feel a victim's bill of rights would be of benefit to the residents of the province? A victim's bill of rights would be that victims would be protected. When they're releasing people from institutions the victims would know and be more aware of the person who raped them, or whatever happened, and that they are out now.
Ms Jenkins: I think any legislation that protects a community at large and at the same time respects the rights of individuals would be appropriate.
Mr Frankford: Do you have any idea at the present time of the balance of how police requirements are divided between, say, criminal activity, traffic and domestic problems?
Ms Jenkins: In my community?
Mr Frankford: Yes.
Ms Jenkins: No, I don't. I can only guess.
Mr Frankford: What would you guess?
Ms Jenkins: I guess it would probably be pretty close to one third. If there is a larger portion, it would be traffic.
Mr Frankford: Okay. Do you have any thoughts on how to change the balance or how to reduce it, let's say, in the domestic field and the traffic field?
Ms Jenkins: In the domestic area, certainly more effective training for police officers would be appropriate, maybe our position of zero tolerance in St Marys and a greater community awareness of the problems of domestic violence that exists in our community and across the country; in traffic, I would say more visible patrols in key areas on a regular basis.
Mr Frankford: Okay. I'll pass.
Mr Waters: My question would be on the subject of police accountability to the community. There have been a lot of people out there talking and it's been in the press quite a bit, about police becoming more accountable to the community, shall we say, in a very direct way. I was wondering what your feelings were on that.
Ms Jenkins: I agree that police have to be accountable. I also think the community has to respect their position and their jobs as police officers and work together as a community to help them achieve a balance between individual rights and problems that exist in the police force. I'm not convinced that public hearings are the answer, but I think police services boards are a good initial step towards police accountability and a second check in the system.
Mr Waters: We all know that Toronto has, shall we say, a race problem, it appears, with the policing of Toronto. There has been a lot of talk about that. In small town, rural Ontario, we don't seem to have that yet. Do you feel we could learn from Toronto's mistakes and prepare for it as people of different races move out of the city? Do you think we should prepare now for that or do you feel the police forces are adequately prepared for dealing with the different cultures?
Ms Jenkins: No. To use your words, if they were Toronto's mistakes, then we're not prepared for it. Effective training for everyone, maybe not looking at Toronto as a mistake but looking at it as a beginning or a basis for comparison, would be a good starting point for police training; community awareness as well. I don't believe it's just a police issue.
Mr Waters: Okay. I know there's been much talk in these committee hearings, because we seem to be reviewing all police boards today, about policing budgets. There's been some discussion as to whether the community should have more control over the budget of the local police force. Do you feel the modern makeup -- because when I looked at St Mary's, I believe there are two municipal councillors or the mayor and the councillor, as well as some people at large -- will help the public's concern about the budgets and the cost of policing or at least show some sort of control?
Ms Jenkins: Yes I do, and I think the two elected officials are even more sensitive to budget concerns in the town and have lots of communication with the citizens and would be a good voice on that board.
Mr Waters: Thank you. Those will be all my comments.
Ms Carter: I just wondered what feelings you have about the role of the police force. Do you see them just primarily as being there to enforce the law or do you think they should be branching out into more of a community service type of role?
Ms Jenkins: I think their services should match the community in which they work, and each community is unique. If there certainly was a need, if community awareness and community services demonstrated in that community that it would prevent crime or criminal activity or protect the citizens of the community better, then that would be appropriate, but I think that should be evaluated on an individual basis.
Ms Carter: For each particular local board, you mean?
Ms Jenkins: Or each community, yes. I believe the needs of the town of St Mary's are much different than a large municipality like Toronto.
Ms Carter: Would you have any problems with race relations, for example, or is that not relevant to a place like St Mary's?
Ms Jenkins: I think it's relevant. The amount of time and energy put into that training might differ for a community like St Mary's as compared to Toronto, but I don't think it could be neglected. We do have visible minorities there, in smaller number, but they exist in our community.
Ms Carter: Do you know if the police are adequately trained to understand people with different backgrounds?
Ms Jenkins: I don't know.
Ms Carter: Is that something that would concern you?
Ms Jenkins: Yes, it would. I would include women in that training as well; and also maybe adolescents, which I believe is our largest crime population in St Mary's, according to our Crime Stoppers reports in the paper anyway.
Ms Carter: Sometimes I think police react to the appearance of the person they're dealing with, forgetting what your sex, race, age or anything else may be. It doesn't really affect the person you are all that much. The need to be more sensitive, not prejudging people, would you say that was valid?
Ms Jenkins: Yes, I would. I would say that of anyone in our community who works in the public sector or with people, not just police officers, but they certainly have a reason to be even more sensitive. I think that training begins at an early age and whatever baggage or prejudice they bring with them to the job might be difficult to retrain.
Ms Carter: Of course, job equity is coming to police forces across Ontario now. They have to look at visible minorities, the disabled, aboriginals and women to make sure they are adequately represented in whatever the workforce is. But of course you have such a small number of uniformed police officers in St Mary's, so this is probably not going to have very much of an impact.
Ms Jenkins: I think it will have an impact, an important one, but maybe not as significant as in a larger community.
The Chair: Do you have another question, Mr Waters?
Mr Waters: You brought up a very interesting point; the lights went on, because I represent a number of small communities. You brought up the point of adolescents. If your community is anything like mine, I think the biggest problem in my community is vandalism and the destruction of the main streets to the point where some of our elderly are afraid to go out for evening strolls, what with roaming groups of young people. I would like your opinion as to whether you feel there is anything that can be done about this by the police services boards or by the police departments.
Ms Jenkins: I would have to say yes to that question. As a resident myself, I would like to walk the streets and feel safe with my purse over my shoulder, so certainly there must be something that can be done to make it better. What those specific answers are, I'm not sure. It may involve working in cooperation with local schools or teachers or community service police officers in helping these people become more responsible for their community or involved in their community in some way so that we can take them off the streets and reduce the amount of vandalism that occurs.
Mr Waters: When I was young in my town, we had local police. Now we're policed by the OPP. We had foot patrol all the time; everybody knew the police officer's name and we seemed to have a rapport. There were always some things going on, but now in small-town Ontario I find it amazing. If you were to take the amount of vandalism in small-town Ontario and put it into Toronto, it would be the riot on Yonge Street by sheer numbers. It's becoming increasingly a major problem in the small communities.
Ms Jenkins: I think it's unfair to compare adolescents in 1992 to when you were an adolescent, though.
Mr Waters: My age is showing, eh?
Ms Jenkins: St Mary's still does have foot patrols, and that is an effective way to create a personal relationship with the adolescents in the town. But most of our vandalism doesn't occur on Main Street; it occurs in the back streets in the residential sections where there are no foot patrols.
Mr Waters: We have the house party problem where they just take a house apart.
The Chair: Thank you very much, Ms Jenkins, for appearing here today. We appreciate it. That concludes the questioning.
All we require at this point is a motion to concur in the intended appointments.
Mr Marchese: I move concurrence, Mr Chair.
The Chair: Moved by Mr Marchese. All in favour?
Motion agreed to.
The Chair: The meeting is adjourned.
The committee adjourned at 1214.