The Ontario government is investing more than $267 million over three years to provide police services across the province with significant new resources to safeguard their local communities.
Ninety police service boards are receiving funding through the Community Safety and Policing Grant Program for 147 public safety initiatives focusing on local and provincial priorities such as gun and gang violence, sexual violence and harassment, human trafficking, mental health and addictions and hate-motivated crime. Many projects will be undertaken in collaboration with community partners.
“Community safety is a top priority, and our government has been strengthening our justice system to protect communities and hold offenders accountable,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. “This investment is another way we are helping police services address local challenges and improve the well-being of the people they serve. Whether to combat the opioid crisis, share intelligence, or prevent violent crime, this funding will make a difference in all corners of Ontario.”
The $267 million investment in the Community Safety and Policing Grant Program includes:
- Approximately $225 million through the local priorities stream to help police services address priority issues such as enhanced police intelligence sharing, expanding mental health supports, preventing crime in schools, combatting bullying, sexual violence, human trafficking, cyber-crime, enhancing road safety and acquiring new technology.
- $43 million to address provincewide priorities such as training for police officers so they are better equipped to handle sexual violence and harassment investigations, identify signs of human trafficking and interact with victims of human trafficking: crime prevention initiatives for at-risk youth and other vulnerable groups and equipment purchases that support policing operations and activities such as enhanced software/technology.
York Regional Police Service’s Project Meliora supports frontline officers and enhances community safety and well-being. The $17.5 million grant funding will be used to help support road safety, property crimes, calls from individuals in crisis, those suffering from mental health issues and at-risk youth. The project will also enhance police modernization, community outreach, and community engagement to efficiently respond to local communities.
YRPS’s Project Trident addresses the victimization, criminalization and marginalization of mental health and hate crimes and will use a three-pronged approach: early intervention, diversion, and follow-up. With this $1.5 million funding, the project will engage faith leaders, newcomers and indigenous partners to reduce the stigma associated with mental health. It will prioritize crisis response by delivering an overtime based Mobile Crisis Response Team to augment existing frontline policing, engage young people through creative virtual and social media platforms and continue to implement human rights education.
All investments will be allocated over a three-year period: 2022-23, 2023-24 and 2024-25 to recipients and projects are listed here.