Kelowna City Hall. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Kelowna City Hall. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

New Kelowna community safety plan in development

‘Community safety and crime reduction are not the responsibilities of police, alone’

Kelowna council endorsed the development of a new community safety plan on Monday, Sept. 28, which is set to shape the way crime is handled and responded to in the city.

The plan is proposed to generate shared ownership, vision and action on crime throughout the range of government ministries and community organizations critical to community safety. Darren Caul, the city’s community safety director, said he hopes the new plan will allow Kelowna to “move beyond police-oriented responses alone.”

“Community safety and crime reduction are not the responsibilities of police, alone,” said Caul.

Caul said shared ownership of safety-systems is “critical” to ensure individuals, families and communities experiencing risk factors are identified earlier. That way they receive timelier, targeted and effective preventative supports before they require urgent and costly intervention or emergency response.

The planning process for the plan will see the city engage with stakeholders, partners and residents to identify community safety issues and priorities.

“Senior leadership from involved organizations is essential to the success and sustainability of city-wide community safety efforts,” said Colleen Cornock, project manager.

“A steering committee comprised of senior government designates with responsibilities for systems and institutions relevant to a Kelowna community safety plan will be relied upon to develop and champion a shared vision for change.”

The plan is expected to be complete in spring 2021, at which point it will be presented to city council.

READ MORE: Council approves new Kelowna General Hospital parking lot

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City of Kelowna