Federal government approves 100 new cops for Surrey, but no timeline provided

SURREY — The Conservative government has approved Surrey’s request for 100 more police officers and has also earmarked $3.5 million toward the Surrey Gang Reduction Program over the next five years.

But local NDP MPs are slamming the government for not revealing when the new Mounties will arrive.

“Are they going to be here before the election, or after the election?” Jasbir Sandhu, NDP MP for Surrey North, demanded. The federal election is set for Oct. 19, 2015.

Sandhu noted Surrey has been asking Ottawa for more officers since hockey mom Julie Paskall was killed. She was attacked on Dec. 29, 2013 and died two days later.

“We need immediate resources,” he said.

As for the $3.5 million, Nina Grewal, Tory MP for Fleetwood-Port Kells, said the money will provide roughly 400 at-risk youth ages 11 to 19 in Surrey with life skills "to help them move away and keep them from violence and the gang lifestyle.

"Lately our streets have become a battle ground for rival gangs and drug dealers, with the violence reaching near crisis proportions," Grewal said. "This gang violence is unacceptable and demands action."

Sandhu, however, said this is not new money.

“This is not additional money,” he said. “It’s continuing the same program onwards, that’s all it is.”

Moreover, he said, the $3.8 million is not taking into Surrey’s growth in the months and years to come. “There’s no additional funding in here to the violence that’s happened in Surrey,”

Tuesday’s announcement comes after 27 shootings in a span of 10 weeks in Surrey and North Delta.

Jinny Sims, NDP MP for Newton-North Delta, said the government should provide a specific timeline to allay Surrey residents worries about recent shootings here.

"We don’t even know when that money is coming and what it can be used for," Sims said. "We need the timeline."

Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner said she’s pleased with the news.

"It’s an unprecedented ask that we’ve made," she noted. 

Hepner said she has "every faith" that the government will quickly deliver the new officers, expecting a mix of new recruits and experienced officers.

“We’ve had 32 (new officers) in the last couple months, so we know they’ll roll them in as quickly as they can."

She noted the contract stipulates they must deliver within 12 months.

“They will be participating in our model of neighbourhood policing," Hepner said when asked how the officers will be deployed. "And they will be added to the youth unit for after school, they will be added to the bicycle unit and I think some general deployment duties as well."

— with files from Amy Reid

Just Posted

Man ‘seriously’ injured in crash after driving wrong way on Highway 17: Surrey RCMP

Police say the sedan hit a transport truck, then another car

Easter ‘eggstravaganza’ event planned for South Surrey

Event is to run from 12-3 p.m. at Dufferin Park (17355 2 Ave.).

IHIT hunting in Edmonton for clues to 2017 Surrey homicide

Tanner Krupa, 19 was found dead in an alley in August 2017, in the 6900-block of 127A Street

Update: Surrey Mounties found missing man

Kuldip Sandhu, 41, had been reported missing

Surrey youth ‘REWIRE’ in play-creating project that involves a lunar eclipse and video games

‘It was such a fun process to create a play from scratch,’ says Guildford Park Secondary student

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Rare ‘Snow Tower’ tree blooming in Vancouver city park

A plant rarely grown in Canada is now flowering at the Bloedel Conservatory in Queen Elizabeth Park

Westjet tries again to dismiss proposed class-action lawsuit alleging discrimination

Former flight attendant claims airline broke contractual promise to create harassment-free workplace

Man airlifted to hospital after apparent hunting incident in East Kootenay

The man was in stable condition when he was flown out of Fairmont Hot Springs to a Calgary hospital

Most Read