A resolution asking the Province to direct the RCMP to amend its reporting statistics to accurately reflect crime statistics based on the regional service area the RCMP responds to will be brought forth by the City of Williams Lake at the upcoming NCLGA Convention.
City Council unanimously authorized the submission of the resolution to NCLGA and UBCM at Tuesday’s regular meeting.
“I think it would reduce our crime statistics by close to 50 percent on a per capita basis and that would give it a much a more accurate reflection of what it’s actually like to be here,” said CAO Milo MacDonald.
“It’s a safe community, and every once in a while there are isolated incidents but as you can see from the news in the last few weeks there’s been isolated incidents in every community. We recognize that and we’re just looking to make sure that the way the statistics are calculated gives Williams Lake a fair shake.”
MacDonald said other municipalities including Fort St. John, Dawson Creek, Terrace, and Quesnel also have high crime indices by Stats Canada due to being deprived of the benefit of their lower crime suburbs
“The fire protection boundary is probably a pretty good proxy for where those boundaries should be,” MacDonald said noting that the way crime statistics are currently collected artificially attributes the crime activities of 30,000 people to a population of 10,000 people.
“We haven’t received support from the province. We did ask the province to support us on that and police services declined to support us on that, but we’re going to continue to pursue the issue. We still believe that we can persuade them that it’s the right thing to do.”
The North Central Local Government Association Annual General Meeting and Conference takes place in Williams Lake May 7-10.
(Editor’s Note: Listen to CAO Milo MacDonald talk about the resolution in the audio file below)