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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Officers warned about harassment earlier than former P.A. police chief’s exit: memo Specific Occasions

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The memo mentioned the drive condemns any type of harassment or discrimination.

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PRINCE ALBERT — Officers with a beleaguered Saskatchewan police drive have been warned about harassing behaviour within the weeks earlier than their police chief accused members of non-public assaults and character assassination, inner paperwork present.

Jonathan Bergen introduced he was retiring as chief of the Prince Albert Police Service final Could, saying he was the topic of “cowardly” assaults.

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“What I don’t count on from my service and the neighborhood I belief and worth is the extent of aggression, aggressive private assault and character assassination on me and my management crew, and the merciless and misdirected emotional assault on my household,” Bergen informed media on Could 18.

Bergen alleged that his spouse and daughter needed to clear up offensive posters that have been put up across the metropolis 138 kilometres north of Saskatoon. He additionally alleged his daughter was adopted by police members.

On Could 1, a memo was despatched to all workers of the drive in Saskatchewan’s third-largest metropolis.

“It was dropped at our discover that photos of a poster, which is taken into account offensive and harassing, have been circulated not solely inside the neighborhood however by members of our group,” mentioned the inner memo signed by three police inspectors.

The memo, obtained via freedom of knowledge legal guidelines, doesn’t describe what was on the poster or the place it was posted. The memo mentioned the drive condemns any type of harassment or discrimination. It directs officers to chorus from sharing the poster, including that circulating the picture undermines the belief and mutual respect “we attempt to foster inside our crew.”

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“The distribution of this picture not solely perpetuates the harassment of our employees but in addition runs opposite to the values of our group,” it mentioned.

The drive would neither verify nor deny that the previous chief made any official complaints in regards to the poster or different harassing behaviour.

Interim Chief Patrick Nogier mentioned he couldn’t communicate to issues that happened earlier than his arrival, including he should additionally adhere to a privateness and confidentiality coverage.

Nogier mentioned the drive’s inner harassment insurance policies align with provincial employment laws and are extraordinarily vital.

“Prince Albert Police Service locations nice emphasis on fostering a piece surroundings that’s free from harassment and conducive to the well-being of its roughly 135 members,” Nogier mentioned in an e mail.

The insurance policies embody preventive measures and a reporting mechanism, he mentioned.

“By way of training, coaching and open dialogue, we goal to create a tradition that respects particular person variations, upholds the regulation, and serves the neighborhood to the most effective of our means,” Nogier mentioned.

The service has been beneath intense criticism in the previous few years. Bergen’s exit got here the identical day as the discharge of a report that discovered two officers uncared for their obligation within the hours earlier than a toddler was killed.

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A Public Complaints Fee report discovered the officers, responding to a home violence name, didn’t test on the well-being of 13-month-old Tanner Brass and left him “susceptible and at risk.”

The boy’s father, Kaij Brass, is charged with second-degree murde; his trial is scheduled for subsequent 12 months.

Earlier this 12 months, a 21-year member of the drive was charged with prison negligence and failing to supply the requirements of life after an investigation into the in-custody loss of life of 33-year-old Saul Laliberte.

Laliberte’s loss of life was the third to happen in police custody over a number of weeks in 2021.

The Saskatchewan authorities appointed former Edmonton police chief Rod Knecht to conduct an impartial evaluate of Prince Albert police amid considerations over operations and criticism from Indigenous leaders.

His full report has not been made public, however the province launched its 45 suggestions, which included a complete coverage evaluate. It additionally really helpful the drive develop a code of conduct in terms of disciplining officers.

The report’s suggestions famous a “variety of severe points inside the (Prince Albert police) concerning self-discipline, grievances, relationships with senior administration, the (Prince Albert Board of Police Commissioners), and total organizational impairment.”

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