Couns. Ryan Svendsen, Judy Dueck, Chelsa Meadus and Mayor Mike Morden at rally in Memorial Peace Park. THE NEWS/files

Couns. Ryan Svendsen, Judy Dueck, Chelsa Meadus and Mayor Mike Morden at rally in Memorial Peace Park. THE NEWS/files

Maple Ridge looking to local experts for safety plan

Reaching out to UFV to get plan done in a year

Maple Ridge is reaching out to local experts as it tries to get its Community Social Safety Plan completed by January 2021.

Council at its Tuesday workshop will decide whether to appoint former Ridge Meadows RCMP officer-in-charge Fraser MacRae, a Maple Ridge resident, along with former managing-director of the Hope for Freedom Society, Rob Thiessen, to serve as consultants. They’ll join the community social safety project management team and will help develop public and business surveys that will help create the safety plan.

Thiessen said community safety is a broad topic. “Not only does there need to be public safety, but there needs to be the perception of safety,” Thiessen said. “And what’s missing in Maple Ridge is the perception part.”

Language now being used is that people are not feeling safe in Maple Ridge, he added. “I’ve heard it for decades about people not feeling safe when they actually are safe. I would say there’s a bit too much rhetoric of it not being safe.”

That being said, there are issues the city has to address, he added.

“But then, they (the city) need to convince the public that is the right way to go and this will make you safe, as we can make you safe.”

Thiessen said that he does relief work in Third World and said if people in Maple Ridge don’t feel safe, they should go to the rural areas of Indonesia or Malaysia. “We’ve got it made in the shade compared to the rest of the world.”

Council also will decide whether to waive its usual bid process that requires three separate quotes in order to speed up the process, and hire the University of the Fraser Valley to conduct a community safety survey under the supervision of criminology professor Irwin Cohen.

According to a staff report, Cohen has worked with other cities developing safety plans and will conduct his research based out of the Centre for Public Safety and Criminal Justice Research at UFV in Abbotsford.

Staff note that RCMP will be conducting similar work and the hope is coordinate some of the efforts.

The cost for the university research, public consulation and the consultants is expected at $100,000, which, if council approves, would come from the community safety reserve account which has an allotted $1.6 million. Another $155,000 has already been used to pay for earlier intiatives.

In addition to the surveys, an open house will take place some time in March with a draft safety plan ready by late next summer or fall.

As well, the city will use online, social media, videos and print measures for its public consultation process.

Council endorsed its Community Social Safety Initiative process and terms of reference for its Community Society Safety Task Force on Sept. 17.



pmelnychuk@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

After clocking in at 207km/hr in Maple Ridge, the driver’s car was impounded, and their licence was suspended. (File photo)
Speedster busted travelling 127 km/hr over limit in Maple Ridge

RCMP nabbed the offender on Lougheed Highway and 287 Street this weekend

Building Interfaith Bridges organized a special crossing of Dewdney Trunk Road in commemoration of the Afzaal family who were killed in London, Ontario. (Special to The News)
Group marches across Maple Ridge intersection for Muslim family killed in Ontario

Participants dressed in traditional outfits to create awareness against Islamophobia

Submit letters to the editor through our website, via email or in writing.
LETTER: Old-growth logging tip of a much bigger issue

Letter writer erects flagpole and fly national and provincial flags upside down as sign of distress

A rendering of the proposed six-storey apartment building on Dewdney Trunk Road. (Billard Architecture)
Green rooftop planned on Maple Ridge condo building

Council considers 127-unit apartment building on Dewdney Trunk Road

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Maple Ridge high school has COVID-19 exposure

Westview secondary is latest listed by Fraser Health

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Robert Nelson, 35, died after being stabbed at a homeless camp in Abbotsford on April 7 of this year.
Mom pleads for information about son’s killing at Abbotsford homeless camp

Robert Nelson, 35, described as ‘man who stood for justice, honour, respect’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

Police arrest the suspect in an attempted armed bank robbery on June 2 at the Scotiabank at Gladwin Road and South Fraser Way in Abbotsford. (Photo by Garry Amyot)
Abbotsford bank robbery suspect who was stopped by customers faces more charges

Neil Simpson now faces total of eight charges, up from the initial two

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

Most Read