Date: Tuesday, March 22, 2022
As indicated by the Township of Esquimalt today, Esquimalt Council has voted down the part of the VicPD 2022 budget that requested 10 additional positions (six officer positions and four civilian employees). VicPD’s budget requires approval by both councils, with Victoria Council having recently approved the budget.
This budget was recommended and approved by the Victoria and Esquimalt Police Board as the minimum budget required to provide adequate and effective policing for the City of Victoria and the Township of Esquimalt. The 10 additional positions for 2022 were not a supplemental request. Instead, they were deemed by our board to be an essential component of the overall core budget request for VicPD.
From an operational perspective, I am disappointed that VicPD’s budget was not approved in its entirety. Our police board, over an exhaustive budget process spanning several months, arrived at this budget based on the best available information relating to resource demands, operational requirements, and public safety trends. Personnel shortages and the demands on our people are only mounting, and this pressure is affecting our ability to provide the community policing that our citizens expect.
I look forward to discussing potential next steps with the Victoria and Esquimalt Police Board.
The 10 positions referred to in Chief Manak’s statement are:
2 Co-Responder Team officers (with Island Health)
2 Assertive Community Treatment Officers
1 Cybercrime Officer
1 Cultural Liaison Officer
2 Front Desk Specialists
1 Records Specialist
1 Business Intelligence Analyst