Overtime policing of convoy protests in Victoria cost B.C. $385,947

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A small group of 'Freedom Convoy' protesters against COVID-related mandates gather at the B.C. Legislature on Feb. 22, 2022. (Ken Mizokoshi/ CBC - image credit)
A small group of 'Freedom Convoy' protesters against COVID-related mandates gather at the B.C. Legislature on Feb. 22, 2022. (Ken Mizokoshi/ CBC - image credit)

B.C. has spent $385,947.25 to cover overtime costs for police officers during nine weeks of protests at the legislature, dubbed the Freedom Convoy, according to the Victoria Police Department.

A statement from the police department says officers from the integrated Greater Victoria Public Safety Unit and specialized civilian staff worked with VicPD members to respond to daily protests that saw large numbers of vehicles and protesters gather at the legislature between January and April.

Police say that despite tension between protesters and counter-protesters and some effects on nearby residents and businesses, there have been no injuries or significant property damage.

There have been three arrests, more than 50 tickets under the Motor Vehicle Act, four City of Victoria bylaw citations related to horn honking and dozens of notice and order documents.

"Our continued thanks to James Bay area residents who have borne the brunt of the disruptions, including significant traffic disruptions and the unlawful use of vehicle horns, including modified air, ship and train horns mounted to vehicles," VicPD Chief Del Manak said in the written statement.

"Officers continue to respond to dangerous or unlawful acts during protests with de-escalation and enforcement."

Because the protests have taken place at the legislature, overtime costs are covered by the province.

The figure released by the police department does not include regular duty hours for the officers involved.

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