FORTY-SIX Surrey Police Service (SPS) officers were sworn in at Surrey City Hall and 11 civilian employees were formally welcomed to the organization on July 16 by Surrey Police Board Chair Doug McCallum, Chief Constable Norm Lipinski, and Provincial Court Judge Kimberley Arthur-Leung.
This marked the SPS’s first swearing-in ceremony, as Surrey’s new municipal police service moves through the largest police transitions in Canadian history.
The SPS received approval from the Director of Police Services of the British Columbia Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General for members to take the policing oath/affirmation pursuant to Section 70 of the Police Act in late June.
The COVID-compliant ceremony included an Indigenous welcome by Semiahmoo First Nation Chief Harley Chappell, the official taking of the Oath of Allegiance and Office by each officer, and the signing of the Surrey Police Service Historical Ledger, which each sworn and civilian employee signs into when they join SPS.
“This was an important event for our officers and civilian staff. There is something truly special about taking an oath to protect and serve your community,” said Chief Constable Norm Lipinski. “SPS continues to move forward and the dedication of all of our staff is inspiring.”
Moving forward, the SPS will host regular, albeit smaller, swearing-in events as new police officers and civilian staff continue to join the organization.
The SPS officers who have been sworn-in, along with the civilian staff, will now embark on completing the administrative tasks required of all police officers serving in British Columbia, as SPS works toward its goal of operationally deploying some police officers in the fall of 2021.
“I am so impressed by the individuals who have joined the Surrey Police Service,” said Police Board Chair Doug McCallum. “They have all chosen to come to the Surrey Police Service in its early days to be a part of building a modern, innovative, and progressive police service for the citizens of Surrey.”
The RCMP remain the police agency of jurisdiction in Surrey during this point of the policing transition, and any calls for police within the City of Surrey should continue to go to the Surrey RCMP.