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Police and public are one and the same in Quesnel

Happy Police Week to those who uphold the right
Quesnel RCMP Const. Lorrie Balaux (left) helps a residential school survivor walk across the rocks on the riverbank. (Karen Powell photo)

This is Police Week across Canada and on May 23, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police will celebrate its 150th birthday.

It’s a time of pride and recognition for the frontline people in uniform who step in when people are suffering, or at their worst, in order that the rest of us might be safer and live a more peaceful life.

When the Quesnel RCMP thinks on these special occasions, they have a lot to be proud of and look forward to, said spokesperson Sgt. Clay Kronebusch.

“Our detachment continues to focus on crime reduction and targeting prolific offenders through proactive policing and project-based investigations,” Kronebusch said. “We have had great success with our efforts in the recent past and hope to continue this push to help keep the community safe.”

Policing is a demanding profession, but equally rewarding. Kronebusch said the Quesnel detachment has a lot of things they are looking forward to, during the sesquicentennial year, and interacting with the community’s next generation is at the top of the list.

“(We are) in the process of planning an RCMP Kids Camp,” he said. “This is a one-day event that you can register your kids for. Kids will take part in various activities throughout the day. The program has been a huge success in the past allowing kids to come out have fun and interact with RCMP officers. The program hasn’t been run in the past few years but we are hoping to restart the program and encourage people to register their kids once the plans are finalized.”

National Police Week represents an opportunity to emphasize how police officers are both members of the social community in which they live, as well as the police community in which they work. Kronebusch said the interwoven ways police and the public interact makes it paramount to approach the job with a sense of understanding towards the people you encounter while in uniform, and to work hard at fostering an understanding of policing and who the people in uniform might be, in the public’s mind.

After all, the foundation of democratic policing, according to one of its greatest inventors, Sir Robert Peel, was that a community’s constabulary be of the people, for the people, by the people. In other words, the people in uniform come right from our communities, and their station in life is as peers of the community, not sequestered away from everyday life.

“True understanding means eliminating assumptions and attitudes and making way for open and constructive conversations balanced with active listening,” Kronebusch said. “Connection is the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued, allowing all parties to derive strength from the relationship. This year, we celebrate our efforts to be connected to our communities.

“We would like to thank all of the community members for their continued support of the RCMP,” he added. “We have police officers who move to Quesnel from all parts of Canada. They work and live in Quesnel, make this their home and become part of the community they live in. Our police officers dedicate countless hours, both on and off duty, helping out with various social events, charity events and helping coach and organize youth sports. We truly care for the community we live in.”

After all, when we suffer whatever it is that needs the dialling of 911, who else would you want coming to your aid but a friend?

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