New Brunswick Social Policy Research Network

NBSPRN launches a process for the development of a collaborative definition of safe neighbourhoods and the role of policing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: The New Brunswick Social Policy Research Network launches a process for development of a collaborative definition of safe neighbourhoods and the role of policing.

FREDERICTON, NB On April 1, 2016, the New Brunswick Social Policy Research Network (NBSPRN), in partnership with the New Brunswick Police Commission and the Minister of Public Safety, hosted an event at the Wu Conference Centre in Fredericton.

This event was part one of a three-part engagement process that will seek input from a number of key stakeholders (academics, municipalities, police chiefs, police unions), to obtain clarity on the definition of adequacy in policing.  This first event brought together researchers working in a variety of disciplines from Université de Moncton, the University of New Brunswick and St. Thomas University with the goal of identifying the latest research that could be used in the development of a shared definition of adequate policing.

The day began with a presentation by Dr. Christopher Murphy, Professor in the Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology at Dalhousie University who spoke about innovative and evidence-based policing models in Canada and around the world. A discussion followed looking at how to identify a safe neighbourhood, what role policing plays in creating and maintaining safe neighbourhoods and finally what factors should be considered when developing a police-resourcing model to support and encourage safe neighbourhoods.

In 2014 the Council of Canadian Academies – Expert Panel on the Future of Canadian Policing Models released a report, Policing Canada in the 21st Century: New Policing for New Challenges.   Dr. Murphy, who spoke at our first event, was a member of this panel.  The Expert Panel identified an increasingly complex environment with new types of crimes and policing costs rising at a rate similar to health care costs.  Given the challenges surrounding Canadian policing, there is a need to increase the capacity of the current police model to meet the safety needs of communities. While the New Brunswick Police Act does attempt to provide a mechanism to assess adequacy through  civilian oversight, there remains no clear articulation of adequacy.

The results of the discussion will be transmitted to the Department of Public Safety who will consider this research for the future phases and incorporate it into the review of the Police Act.  The objective of the next phases, in partnership with, NBSPRN will facilitate a broader engagement process, including municipalities, police chiefs and police unions, aiming to build on the evidence-base to determine police adequacy, develop an agenda for future research, and to innovate how policing is done in the province.


Media Contacts:

Nick Scott
Executive Director, New Brunswick Social Policy Research Network

Steve Roberge
Executive Director and CEO, New Brunswick Police Commission

Elaine Bell
Director of Communications, Department of Public Safety

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A Ginger Design