You may notice a team of new police force members, readily identifiable in uniforms with light blue piping and specially marked vehicles.
York Regional Police's community support officers are attending calls, collecting information and evidence and helping to keep citizens safe, according to a news release.
The special constables have been on patrol in Vaughan since last November as part of a one-year pilot project, and the force is exploring how the program can be expanded across the region in the future.
Among their duties, they direct traffic, assist with road closures, provide security at insecure premises and crime scenes, canvas neighbourhoods for witnesses and surveillance footage and take reports for property crimes, which frees police officers to focus on priority calls.
CSOs will also help increase York Regional Police presence the community through pro-active foot and vehicle patrols to help deter crime and provide residents with enhanced service delivery.
“Community support officers are a valuable asset to York Regional Police and York Region. These peace officers perform vital operational tasks and help keep the public safe, allowing sworn officers to be directed where they are needed most,” said Chief Jim MacSween. “They also engage meaningfully with the public, creating stronger bonds of trust between our police service and the community it serves.
“So far, our CSOs have been very well received by the community. Members of the public have remarked appreciatively on their professionalism, thoughtfulness and enthusiasm, as well as their desire to go above and beyond to provide assistance.”