COVID-19 continues to have an impact on policing efforts within the Municipality of the Grey Highlands, according to Paul Schambers, detachment commander for the Grey-Bruce Ontario Provincial Police.
Schambers reports the region continued to see low instances of violent, property and drug crimes throughout the months of July and August.
“There are going to be several reasons why that's down. Property crime more so because we're out there and the people that are going to engage in these things they've been staying home more, and they're more easily observed,” said Schambers as he presented his report to the Grey Highlands police service board earlier this week.
According to the detachment report, the instances of violent, property and drug crimes have dropped 2.3 per cent in 2020, compared to the same time period in 2019.
The detachment’s overall billing hours have also dropped. The report indicates the detachment is 1,000 hours below the same period last year.
“Assaults and frauds are way down. Those are the biggest contributors to that reduction,” he said. “That's a significant decrease in the billing summary and the calls for service attributable to Grey Highlands. There's no real rhyme or reason to it other than we're in this COVID situation. That has been a contributing factor for the vast majority of it.”
In terms of COVID-related occurrences, the detachment responded to two calls in August and no COVID-related calls in July.
“We continue to get the very odd quarantine-act compliance check. That's a federal-government-driven initiative. That goes to our headquarters, and then we get tasked with ensuring people are quarantining according to the Federal Act.”
He adds that it has been at least two weeks since the Grey Highlands detachment received a request for a compliance check in Grey and Bruce Counties.
Schambers says traffic and stunt driving continues to be one of the main area of focus for the detachment, with issues tending to compile near the Highway 10 corridor.
“Now that we're into the fall, things are calming down. But, I have started taking a look at next year and planning on what we're going to do above that,” he said.
According to Schambers, the Grey Highlands detachment is also expecting to onboard six new recruits in October.
Jennifer Golletz, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, CollingwoodToday.ca