DIDSBURY – Town council has approved a number of changes regarding municipal enforcement in the municipality.
The moves came by way of motion at the recent regularly scheduled council meeting, which took place by teleconference.
One change involves access to the Canadian Police Information Centre (CIPC) by municipal peace officers.
CPIC contains information such as criminal records data, and bulletins on stolen vehicles and property.
“Alberta Justice and Solicitor General, public security peace officer program has developed a CPIC policy that must be followed by all community peace officers who wish to access information from CIPC,” administration said in a briefing note to council.
Didsbury's new Canadian Police Information Centre Policy PS 017 is being adopted to bring the municipality into line with the new provincial program.
The new policy’s states that “The town employs community peace officers to enforce the Alberta Traffic Safety Act and other provincial statutes within its municipal boundaries. In order for the peace officers to conduct their enforcement duties in a safe, professional manner, access to information contained within CPIC is an operational requirement.”
The policy requires the municipal peace officer to adhere to the guidelines set out by Alberta Justice when accessing CPIC.
The Rural Municipalities of Alberta, which represents 69 municipalities including Didsbury, has been calling for municipal peace officer to have access to CPIC.
Updated reporting requirements
Council also approved an updated policy regarding reporting requirements of community peace officers to the provincial director of law enforcement.
Policy PS 021 states that a report that report to the director must be made within 24 hours of the use of a firearm not related to the Animal Protection Act, Dangerous Dogs Act, Stray Animals or Wildlife Act; the use of a firearm other than in a training situation; any use of a firearm or weapons that resulted in a training accident.
A report must be made within 48 hours on the use against a person of a baton, conducted energy weapon or tear gas not related to the above legislation.
Reports must also be made as soon as possible in the following cases:
• the use of a firearm in circumstances in which it was discharged in response to a perceived threat.
• any incident with a peace officer involving serious injury or the death of any person. This does not include circumstances where the peace officer provided traffic control for the police at a fatal or serious motor vehicle collision.
• any allegation that a peace officer used excessive force as identified though an internal reporting process complaint.
• any incident involving a peace officer where a weapon was used by somebody else, other than animal-related duties or training.
• any matter of serious or sensitive situation related to the action of a peace officer.
• incidents in which a peace officer has violated the employer’s code of conduct.
Council also updated the town’s policy regarding the use and maintenance of peace officers’ notebooks, including that they should note be kept in vehicles, or left unprotected and should be locked up and secured after every shift.