Clearwater town council has agreed to support a “three-tier system” for the RCMP’s Auxiliary Constable Program.
Under the proposed system, there would be three levels duties the auxiliary constables (ACs) could perform, each based on successive levels of training and experience.
The first tier would be community policing (e.g. safety education, crime prevention, etc.). The auxiliaries would wear a civilian-type uniform and would not be appointed as peace officers. A draft standard would have about 80 hours of training.
Tier 2 would include all Tier 1 activities, plus traffic and crowd control, parades, public ceremonies, and foot or bike community presence under indirect supervision.
ACs in Tier 2 would receive additional training, be appointed peace officers, wear a police-type uniform, and be issued intervention tools and soft body armour.
Tier 3 ACs would receive even more training. They would participate in general duty patrolling, check stops and other duties as deemed appropriate. They would receive firearms familiarization.
The auxiliary constable program has been in existence in B.C. for over 50 years. There are presently about 700 active ACs in 67 RCMP detachments throughout the province.
The program came into some controversy nationally early this year after the RCMP took away many of the auxiliaries’ duties, including ride-alongs, after one in Alberta was shot and wounded.
Union of BC Municipalities is asking local governments across the province to indicate their preferred option regarding the future of the program.