A letter writer does the math and figures it would not be economical to create a provincial police force in B.C.

RCMP versus B.C. police

Premier  Christy Clark says having a provincial police force would be “cheaper” than the RCMP?

There she goes again shooting from the lip before having all the facts.

Let’s do a comparison and use Vancouver Police versus Surrey RCMP.

Vancouver has a smaller geographical area to police than Surrey, yet the population is just about equal, with Surrey’s growing every day. It will soon surpass that of Vancouver’s.

Vancouver has approximately 1,400 officers, while Surrey has approximately 650.

This is because Vancouver is a unionized force which follows a different set of rules when it comes to policing and hiring per capita, such as two-man cars after certain hours, while the RCMP are not unionized and therefore can operate with less police per capita.

Should Christy Clark get rid of the RCMP, Surrey police would then fall under B.C. policing guidelines, becoming unionized. This would mean they would have to increase the force by approximately 750 police officers just to match Vancouver. And that is not counting replacing the RCMP members who wish to remain with the RCMP and leave the province – which could mean (if half of the 650 stayed) 1,000 to 1,100 new police for Surrey.

Now expand these calculations to include Burnaby, North Vancouver, Coquitlam, Langley and White Rock detachments. There are 6,000 RCMP members policing B.C.

Even if half of these members stay, it still leaves Christy Clark in the position of hiring approximately 9,000 police officers to not only replace but comply with B.C. union hiring rules.

Add onto this the cost of training, equipment, uniforms, salaries, benefits, services and the 10 per cent  loss of funding now provided by the federal government towards policing in B.C.

How it would be cheaper to replace the RCMP?

J. Edwards, Surrey

Surrey North Delta Leader

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