Just few points:Before all of this, I‘d already been pushing for reform of the police, and now is the time to do it. We don’t need cops who are highly trained to deal with violence and who absolutely deserve their high pay for endangering themselves, sitting at construction sites or writing traffic tickets earning $100k/year. We don’t need them interacting with people suffering from homelessness. We don’t need them responding to people in crisis.
Police absolutely need to exist to deal with gangs, homicides, theft and other potentially violent crime. But Parking Enforcement can be expanded into Traffic & Parking Enforcement who dont carry weapons and who are motivated to dealing with actual traffic enforcement and don’t think it’s beneath them. Traffic wardens can manage construction sites just fine. EMS can be expanded and trained to deal with people in mental health crisis. Organizations that deal with homelessness can have their funding increased to better assist with that.
Absolutely, defund the police and redirect that money to appropriate services that have no reason to carry guns.
-you do realize that guarding construction sites, etc. are largely 'paid duties'. I actually think these types of roles could be done by a regulated private industry with a few exceptions.
- perhaps bylaw personnel could deal with homeless persons, but if it involves physical conflict, they'll have to be trained, equipped and no doubt paid more (and probably more if them).
- I'd really like to hear from EMS if they're willing to 'go tactical'; i.e.handle mental distress calls all by their lonesome, ignoring the current lack of authority to treat or transport (take custody) of an unwilling patient.
-I realize this is a urban-centric forum. but unarmed traffic police has been tried. Google New Brunswick Highway Patrol. It all works until somebody gets hurt. If you think it is an isolated incident, I have a couple of names for you.