The RM of Stuartburn is hoping to start a Citizens on Patrol Program (COPP). 

Reeve Michelle Gawronsky contacted the COPP, and says they are coming to the Vita Hall on February 28. 

“The crime rate has gone up, it's gone way up, so we're asking everyone to come out, at least hear what's being said,” she says. “We need a way to be able to make sure that our communities are safe and that our properties are being respected, but we need to do that in a way that we are being respectful and we're doing it in the safe way within the law.” 

This Wednesday, COPP directors, local RCMP, and someone involved in the COPP from Grunthal will be in attendance. 

“They (Grunthal) started their program up, and I was speaking to one of their counselors a couple of days ago, and he said that the crime rate is going down and it is this huge success.” 

Gawronsky says that as crime rates are rising, the community has two choices. 

“We can sit on our thumbs and complain as we get robbed, or we can actually pull together and make sure that our communities are safe working within the agencies that are willing to help us.” 

She explains that Citizens on Patrol is an initiative, and volunteers act as extra eyes and ears in the community for the local RCMP. 

The program improves community safety through deterrence, education, and awareness.  

“The COPP, they will give us the vests that we need to be wearing, decals for our vehicles so that we're easily identified in case someone needs our help. They also teach us what to look for, how to look for it, and make sure that we're safe while we're working with the local authority.” 

She asks that residents come out on Wednesday and learn about the program, even if they aren’t interested in signing up. 

“Crime is happening at a much greater rate, and we need to take our communities back, but we need to do it with respect and working in line with our local authorities, the RCMP.” 

The COPP information night is Wednesday, February 28 at Vita Hall at 6:30pm. 


With files from Adi Loewen