Editorial – Time to Get Back to Basics for Cobourg Police

In Editorial

It a tough job being a cop in a town like Cobourg.

Cobourg is the hub of Northumberland County – for better or worse that means the town gets the good, the bad and the ugly of a number of things.

Being that Cobourg is the largest town in the County, it also stands to reason it has the most call volume for a number of services like policing.

No one will argue, police are paid well – but in the same sentence it’s safe to say that no police officer these days thought their job would be like it is.

Stating that – it’s a fact and a way of life.

So the next point is making the best out of what you have – understanding the needs, wants of the public. Frankly that shouldn’t really be that hard to understand.

Anyone would want to live in a safe, crime free town. That is also something that no hamlet, village, town or city would ever have. It’s simply a fantasy.

So you do your best for the community you serve, but don’t ever expect perfection.

But sometimes, sometimes, it’s hard to hold back as a member of the media and a person who spent their life in this town.

The latest press release police issued on Wednesday, November 15, 2023 is one of them.

A “community canvass” was done by police on November 11 in the east end of town.

Police visited 116 homes and spoke to 90 individuals between 1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m.

The canvass was done in the Cottesmore, Meredith Avenue, Thomas Street, Jane Street, Brook Road North, Rolling Street and King Street East.

In a nutshell, around the encampment area that is at the former Brookside Youth Centre.

On October 18, Cobourg Police announced a “Dynamic Patrol Initiative,” for the east end focusing on engagement, community prevention etc.

Cobourg Police are saying the concerns raised online don’t align with statistics.

The Chief said repeatedly in previous meetings that just because someone doesn’t “feel” safe, doesn’t mean it isn’t safe. It’s how they “feel.”

These days, that analogy isn’t holding much water.

So what can be done?

More boots on the ground – period.

But the service doesn’t need to go door to door for survey’s.

It’s a complete waste of time.

And if they are so inclined, don’t send a Sergeant who is the top ranking person working on a shift, making roughly $150 G’s a year to go door-to-door asking for opinions that should clearly be known to anyone who lives and works in the community.

Send Police Auxiliary – which at no cost to the taxpayers could do the same.

We’ll also go out on a limb and state once again, correcting a problem that isn’t a problem only creates – problems.

Taking away the names of people charged on press releases has been an utter failure from the beginning.

If a person is charged with any type of offence including, but not limited to assault, threats, break-in, breach of conditions and thefts from stores there is no doubt that the name should be released.

Why should police be the only ones who know who these people are.

Safety is paramount in this community – so is communications.

IF a press release is issued, at times it is missing information. When asked for clarification, it’s about even if you will get a reply or not.

The latest – a few press releases that were issued recently stated the events happened in the “east end” of town. Today’s Northumberland asked if that was the encampment area. We are still waiting for any type of reply.

Even the Police Services Act hearing of a Constable with the service. One has to wonder if any information would have been released if not for Today’s Northumberland.

It’s been a week since the hearing, and nothing officially has come out regarding the hearing.

Citizens need to have confidence in the police not only for enforcing the law, but for communicating with the public openly.

Coming up with new words for what’s called “policing” only creates problems.

Another suggestion – sometimes wearing a bright coloured uniform along with a cruiser that stands out from a kilometre away isn’t the best way of getting the catch of the day.

The encampment problem has nothing to do with Cobourg Police and no one should blame them for any of those issues that go along with that. But the community doesn’t need to be wined and dined about “Dynamic Patrols” and a “Community Canvas” to feel safe.

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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