SURREY Police Service (SPS) continues to attract and hire highly qualified experienced officers and new recruits, making SPS now the third largest municipal police agency in British Columbia.
Over the past month, 39 police officers were officially sworn in, and five civilian employees were welcomed to SPS. In just 18 months, Surrey’s new municipal police service has grown from one employee to 275 employees, which is made up of 235 police officers and 40 civilian employees.
SPS is now the third largest municipal police agency in the province, with only Vancouver and Victoria having larger municipal agencies. The current SPS officer number also makes the service the sixth largest in BC when all municipal departments and RCMP detachments are considered.
SPS recently closed its second application pool for new recruits, with 409 applications received. The SPS recruiting team will now review all applications and begin testing for qualified applicants in order to fill 13 spots for the fall 2022 class at the Justice Institute of BC Police Academy. SPS also continues to hire experienced police officers for positions in its Community Policing Bureau, with 60% of the 2022 positions already filled.
On May 24, another group of SPS officers was deployed to respond to calls for service in Surrey. This brings the total number of deployed SPS officers to 85, with more being added every two months, as outlined in the SPS-RCMP Human Resources Strategy and Plan.
Prior to being deployed, SPS officers are provided with five weeks of training with SPS, followed by a three-day orientation with the Surrey RCMP. These officers bring a wealth of experience from their previous agencies, and a desire to contribute to the historic creation of a brand-new police service for one of Canada’s most diverse cities.
“With every additional SPS officer hired and deployed, the transition to the City’s own police service advances,” says Chief Constable Norm Lipinski. “Our officers are increasingly being noticed in the neighbourhoods and town centres of Surrey and they regularly receive positive feedback from citizens. They are doing outstanding work and I’m extremely proud of them.”
Surrey RCMP remain the police of jurisdiction at this point in the transition. Their detachment, community offices, and phone numbers remain the primary points of contact for non-emergencies. As always, 911 should be utilized in emergency situations.