Brantford Police will be creating a anti-human trafficking strategy and team with the help of a provincial grant of $3.2 million over three years. The grant will also be used to continue to fund the city’s guns and gangs task force.
The Ontario government’s Community Safety and Policing Grant program will be allocating a total of $195 million across the province with an aim for funds to be used to maintain and improve pubic safety.
Brantford’s application and grant of significant funds was successful in part because it also included the area of Brant and Six Nations.
Specifically, Brantford Police are planning to use the funds in five key areas relating to human trafficking: to strengthen their intervention teams and response to individuals in crisis; launch an anti-human trafficking strategy to reduce and identify victims; form a human trafficking team to coordinate intervention and services to victims and those at risk; develop social media and education campaigns aimed at youth; and purchase surveillance equipment and technology used to identify and rescue victims.
Brantford Police Chief, Robert Davis, says they are very pleased to be a recipient of the grant. “This grant will allow our service to expand enforcement, intervention and prevention strategies that will positively contribute to the safety and well-being of our community,” Davis explains.
Mayor Kevin Davis says gun and gang violence and human trafficking are trans-regional problems are therefore the fight against that crime must also be trans-regional.
“We have done what we can within our resource base and property tax base. Two thirds of our tax increase for this coming year will be devoted to improving and making our police services more effective, but as I’ve said many times, we can’t do it alone.”Brantford Mayor, Kevin Davis
Davis adds, the amount of funds granted was a great deal more than he anticipated. He also expressed thanks to MPP, Will Bouma for advocating to the province on the city’s behalf.
Ontario’s Solicitor General, Sylvia Jones, was also on hand to make the funding announcement with Brantford MPP, Will Bouma.
“Public safety is a fundamental responsibility of government. That’s why we believe in putting resources directly into the hands of police services, as they are the experts in maintaining public safety and our primary partners in keeping Ontario communities safe.”Sylvia Jones, Solicitor General
The provincial program will be allocating a total of $181 million to 89 police services boards across the province to be used in areas identified as needed in each community. In addition, approximately $14 million will be allocated to 18 police services boards address gun and gang violence, sexual violence and harassment, and human trafficking.