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Grants to increase community safety, connect people to services in Duncan

Grants to increase community safety, connect people to services in Duncan

March 12, 2021 at 7:38 am  BC, News, Politics

People in Duncan and North Cowichan who are at risk of harm or victimization will benefit from a $30,000 grant to create a community-based team of front-line workers to deliver better, faster access to services.

“We want to see all people, particularly those who are vulnerable and high risk, receive the right support and services they need, when they need them,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “By investing in creating these teams in communities throughout the province, we’re helping front-line workers rapidly connect with people in crisis, while freeing up police to focus on serious and organized criminal activity.”

The teams, known as “situation tables,” are made up of representatives from health, public safety and social service agencies. They proactively identify vulnerable individuals or families who have a significant probability of criminal offending or experiencing harm or victimization, and rapidly connect them to services before they experience a negative or traumatic event.

Funding is provided by the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General’s Office of Crime Reduction and Gang Outreach. The office has invested more than $1.1 million since 2017 to develop new tables or enhance existing ones, with another $240,000 to provide funding to seven more communities this year.

There are currently 10 situation tables operating in B.C., with work underway on 11 more.

Quotes:

Michelle Staples, mayor, City of Duncan –

“The situation table model has been proven successful in many other places that it is being established. This is something that we’ve been asking for in our region for years now, the ability for police, front-line workers, health-care workers, local governments, bylaws and others to understand the problems and work together to solve them. It will help reduce demands over the long term on emergency services and resources while at the same time, work to proactively connect people to the services they need before they experience negative or traumatic behaviours or events and help get them back on track.”

Doug Routley, MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan –

“This new tool will enable greater collaboration among services providers so people at risk can get the help they need quickly and safely. Our government is listening to the needs of people and investing in solutions that will benefit the vulnerable and marginalized.”

Sheila Malcolmson, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions –

“To better connect vulnerable people with the services that can prevent crisis, crime and disorder, situation tables problem solve one case at a time, so at-risk individuals get the help they need. In 2019, 54% of situation table cases were transferred from police to social services, so police could focus on criminals instead.”

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