Ottawa Police Chief Peter Sloly has announced the locations of its three new Neighbourhood Resource Teams (NRT) for 2020.
The three teams will be located in ByWard Market/Lowertown starting in May and then in Centretown and Bayshore starting in the Fall of this year. The teams will be using existing resources approved in the police budget.
These new teams will be added to the existing NRT's already located in Vanier/Overbrook, Heron Gate/South Ottawa, and Carlington/Caldwell.
The NRT's were created to increase community-based policing and prevent and reduce firearm violence along with other associated violent street crimes in Ottawa.
Ottawa police said in a release that the neighbourhoods were chosen in 2019 because of, "an increased volume of crime (including gun, gang and drug related violent street crime), the presence of complex social issues that underpin most crime (housing, employment, education, health, marginalization, discrimination, etc.) and a high number of calls for police service."
The Neighbourhood Resource Teams will be solely in their assigned neighbourhoods for a minimum of two years. NRT's will work with local community residents and partners, and businesses as well as city staff to address crime, and underlying socio economic issues.
"The NRTs are the centrepiece of the OPS neighbourhood policing strategy. We are putting them in place in the communities that need the help the most," said Chief Peter Sloly.
Last year, Ottawa saw a reduction in the number of shootings from 78 to 73, and a total of 13 homicides, down from 16 in 2018. Additionally, 70 crime guns were seized by police in 2019, up from 68 in 2018. This year, police have already seized eight crime guns.
"We are looking at improving existing systems to provide the foundation for more action on violent crime," said Chief Sloly. "This will ensure that frontline officers have the most up-to-date information and resources available on every call."
The OPS will continue to work with Crime Prevention Ottawa, and other partners to revamp their existing street violence and gang strategy.