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Posted: March 8, 2022

RCMP and social services share views on crime spike

The issue of increasing property crime and the search to find answers and steps forward continued last week when the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce hosted a second townhall meeting at College of the Rockies.

On March 2, the chamber hosted social services agency representatives and Cranbrook RCMP. The first meeting featured elected leaders.

Cranbrook RCMP Detachment commander S/Sgt. Barry Graham was on hand to offer points of view and observations from local police officers, while Ktunaxa Nation Social Sector and Street Angels were represented by Diane Whitehead and Rachel Nicholas. Polly Sutherland of ANKORS/Harm Reduction was also on hand.

Cranbrook Community Connections did not attend because BC Housing wasn’t on hand. Community Connections noted it wants to remain a part of the solution.

A number of questions from the public were asked of the panel, ranging from criminal activity to connections with homelessness and addictions.

Questions included: What can citizens do to help beyond just donating cash? What is best course of action for small business owner faced with rude/intimidating people? And just when should people call the police? How should business owners/managers deal with drug use occurring on their premises? What strategies to prevent crime have been implemented? How do social service agencies operate? How are they funded? How do they interface with Interior Health? What happened to Citizens on Patrol? And many more.

Thanks to emcee Chris Botterill, owner of Genex Marketing, the townhall flowed and covered a wide range of topics. The townhall was filmed and makes for an extremely informative watch. Please see the full-length video accessed below.

“I think this is the first of many steps we need to take to address this issue,” said chamber executive director Helen Barron. “People here care; we pull together. We can figure it out.”

View the entire 90 minutes video.

Video courtesy Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce


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