As one school director in our issue points out: "Prevention has never been glamourous." For many, it's hard to get excited about crime prevention.
But before you stop, read on to learn just how impactful prevention and intervention programs can be. The stories are interesting — even inspiring.
Take our cover story. Amelia Thatcher writes about the important strides that the Surrey Gang Enforcement Team and the Surrey Youth Unit in British Columbia (B.C.) are making by directing younger children away from gangs. It starts with dispelling the myths about gang-life — and letting an ex-gang member turned advocate tell the real story.
Thatcher also writes about a collaborative approach to reducing gang violence in Samson Cree Nation in Maskwacis, Alta. The HUB model brings together RCMP and other community service providers to mobilize and proactively target youth at high risk of joining a gang, and give them the choice to be something else.
To have an impact on crime, building strong community relationships is essential. Paul Northcott interviewed RCMP Community Program Officer Maryah Walker about her role supporting police and residents in La Loche, Sask. Walker says for her, making those connections started with sharing a community meal and learning a new language.
Northcott also looks at the importance of good communication. During last summer's wildfires, the RCMP's Aboriginal Police Services in B.C. were on high alert, and concerned that the community of Alkali Lake was at risk of being re-evacuated. Keeping the lines of communication open meant going live on the local radio station to explain where the fires were moving and how residents could stay safe.
For the RCMP's Public Engagement Unit in Ontario, which works to prevent terrorism and extremism, building trust with local communities took time. But now, the unit holds workshops with community leaders to share how protective factors, such as family support and positive self-esteem, can prevent youth from engaging in political violence before it's too late.
Finally, for our panel discussion, we ask four officers across Canada how police presence in schools can help with prevention. Not surprisingly, making connections with students yields all kinds of benefits from developing trusting relationships, to volunteerism and making smart choices.
What crime prevention may lack in glamour, it more than makes up for in good sense.
In our River rescue story (Vol. 80, No. 1, 2018), the river in question was the North Saskatchewan River, not the Fort Saskatchewan River. We apologize for the error.
MarCom Award winner
Gazette magazine has been named a Platinum winner of the 2017 MarCom Awards for its issue on police training (Vol. 79,
No. 1, 2017).
MarCom Awards recognizes achievement by communications professionals for excellence in quality and creativity. As a Platinum Award recipient, Gazette magazine was judged to be among the most outstanding in the 2017 competition.