The Surrey Police Service has signed an agreement with CUPE 402 to enable support staff currently working with the Surrey RCMP to transfer over to the fledgling police force.
The memorandum of agreement has been signed by Chief Constable Norm Lipinski, CUPE 402 President Jeannie Kilby and Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum. Through it the RCMP will continue to receive support during the transition to the city-made force and confirms unionized staff will have positions available to them as the SPS gets underway.
“For decades, CUPE members have provided a range of support services to the RCMP Surrey Detachment,” Kilby noted in a press release issued Monday. “Our members are committed to providing excellence in public safety to Surrey, a city in which many of them live. Over 450 CUPE employees and their families now have the security to move forward with the SPS, while continuing to support the RCMP and its members through this transition.”
Lipinski said as employees transfer from the RCMP to SPS, bringing with them “extensive public safety knowledge and skills,” there will be “no disruption to the provision of service to the residents of Surrey.”
Meanwhile, the timing of the transfer of City of Surrey staff to the SPS has yet to be determined and a plan for implementing the agreement is expected to be “mutually developed” the SPS and the union in coming weeks.
At Surrey council’s inaugural meeting on Nov. 5, 2018 it served notice to the provincial and federal governments it is ending its contract with the RCMP – which has policed these parts since May 1, 1951 – to set up its own force.
Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth on Aug. 22, 2019 gave the city the go-ahead to pursue the plan.