Staff Sgt. Scott West helps tour new immigrants to Canada around the Salmon Arm RCMP detachment in January to get an inside view of police operations. (Contributed)

Salmon Arm RCMP, new immigrants get acquainted at police station

Tour of detachment provides opportunity to explore differences in judicial systems

What began as a complaint turned into an opportunity for Salmon Arm RCMP and new immigrants to the community.

Salmon Arm Citizens on Patrol, who are RCMP associate volunteers, carry out many duties to support the work of police, including setting up Speed Watch displays to slow motorists and being the eyes and ears of police by patrolling areas of Salmon Arm and Canoe.

Cpl. Luiz Sardinha liaises with the group and heard that citizens at a local centre were alarmed when they saw individuals in uniforms in the parking lot. Sardinha said it happened to be a place where stolen vehicles and property are sometimes stashed by people other than those at the centre.

The complaint highlighted the need for police to talk to different agencies, one being the Shuswap Immigrant Services Society. A visit there was set up to offer details about volunteer opportunities as well as provide information to help newcomers integrate into the community.

A 20-minute visit turned into two hours, Sardinha said, with much interest in policing.

The language class was then invited to tour the police station, so about 20 people from countries including Japan, Romania, Italy, Syria, Mexico and Germany participated.

Read more: Salmon Arm council to lobby for highway improvements, police officers and more

Read more: 2018 – Salmon Arm police hit the street with foot patrols

Sardinha and Staff Sgt. Scott West were two of the officers involved in the visit.

“They really enjoyed learning more about the judicial system from the policing perspective as well as being able to try on some of the bullet-proof vests and the equipment,” West said, adding with a smile: “There might be the odd picture with somebody in handcuffs dangling in front of them.”

Sardinha said the participants were able to talk to police officers who helped, in some cases, to dispel fears.

“What we were trying to get out of it was to get some people volunteering for citizens’ patrol, and just get to know their police department and know police aren’t bad,” he said. “I told them I live in the same community as you do. If you see me, wave at me, say ‘hi’ to me. I’m not a policeman when I’m out walking with my family.”

Mehrnaz Kobari, a settlement worker with Shuswap Immigrant Services Society, said relationships in different countries can be very different with police.

“The visit to the station is the first step in introducing them and getting them connected with the RCMP.

She notes the introductions and information-gathering go both ways.

“So the community partners will know there is a lot of diversity in Salmon Arm…”



marthawickett@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

RCMPSalmon Arm

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Staff Sgt. Scott West helps tour new immigrants to Canada around the Salmon Arm RCMP detachment in January to get an inside view of police operations. (Contributed)

Just Posted

LETTER: Questions raised about Summerland property taxes

Dear Editor: By now property owners in Summerland will have received their… Continue reading

COLUMN: Is parliament essential?

We need time to dig into the books and ensure that taxpayers are being respected

Heads up, it’s fawning season in Penticton

Baby deer seen frolicking through downtown Penticton Wednesday afternoon

Penticton RCMP express concern over allowing public drinking

RCMP said they expressed their concern to the city but will do their best ensure safety

WATCH: North Okanagan golf cart stolen, then returned

Homeowners have footage of two men taking the cart and then bringing it back

Police watchdog investigating fatal crash in Kelowna

Kelowna RCMP received a report of a single-vehicle collision on Bulman Road near Highway 97 on June 1

Kelowna council greenlights ‘The Wedge’

The wedge-shaped building will be built at the corner of Leon Avenue and Water Street

Vehicle stolen in Revelstoke recovered near Salmon Arm after occupants suffer overdoses

Police say they were alerted to the vehicle after occupants treated by ambulance after drug use

Kelowna BC SPCA busy throughout pandemic

Branch manager Sean Hogan said they have a good problem right now

Province looks to seize Kelowna home owned by alleged drug trafficker

Michelle Collins and Nigel Byrne were also recently investigated by Kelowna RCMP for drug trafficking

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

John Horgan says COVID-19 restrictions won’t be eased regionally

B.C. Liberals urge ‘tailored’ response based on infections

Highway 1 closed after body found near Hope

Coroners Service reportedly on the scene, highway has been closed for 10 hours in both directions

Most Read