The Ontario Police College’s basic Constable Training program tuition will now be fully covered by the provincial government, enabling additional officer recruitment and training across the province.
The Basic Constable Training program’s $15,450 tuition fee will be eliminated retroactive to January 1, 2023. Reimbursement will be given to recruits who paid for the 12-week training earlier this year.
What’s more, the quantity of volunteers prepared every year will be extended from 480 to 550.
On April 25, the news was announced at a press conference held at Toronto Police College by Premier Doug Ford.
He stated that his government is also preparing legislation that, if approved, will eliminate the requirement for postsecondary education to become a police officer, paving the way for a greater number of individuals to consider a career in law enforcement.
Ford stated, “These measures together will help attract new recruits, break down financial barriers that may have prevented people from becoming police officers, and build a pipeline of police officers ready to serve and push back against the growing tide of crime.” We acknowledge that increasing the number of on-the-ground personnel is an essential step in enhancing public safety, but that it is not the only one. Because of this, we have contributed $267 million to the Community Safety and Policing Grant program, which provides local police departments with the resources and equipment they require to carry out their duties.
Michael Kerzner, the Solicitor General of Ontario, supports the historic changes to encourage police recruitment.
He stated, “This is good news for Ontario’s police services, for all of the people of Ontario, and for those who are considering a career as a police officer.” Let’s take a moment to give thanks to the amazing people who give their time to help their communities. Today, we are demonstrating to our recruits that they are not alone on this journey as they make the decision to enter a profession marked by risk and sacrifice. Police recruits make the decision to cross the line and pursue a career in public safety; they make the decision to support us. We are taking the step today so that we can continue to support them.
The news was also welcomed by Chief Myron Demkiw of the Toronto Police Service.
“Like most police administrations across Canada, Toronto Police is striving to enroll, select, recruit and train new officials,” he noted. ” However, this takes time and frequently encounters obstacles when deploying new officers. We want support in enlisting and preparing. We will be able to deliver policing services to residents in all of our communities with greater efficiency thanks to today’s news.
Demkiw said that the new measures will help TPS increase capacity and get officers on the road sooner without sacrificing the quality of training they need to be ready for their crucial role in protecting the public.
He also acknowledged that service levels are not keeping up with the increasing demands of a growing city, despite the TPS’s best efforts.
Demkiw continued, “Our latest budget, which was approved by City Council, is part of a multi-year plan to help us deliver core policing services and add capacity by adding people, improving technology, and putting reforms into place to help address the increasing public safety needs of our communities.”
“This incorporates further developing our 9-1-1 reaction, expanding watches, zeroing in on wrongdoing avoidance, serious examinations and casualty support as well as the conveyance of our Local People group Official program that is generally welcomed and popular across our city. In addition, we are the ones, along with our emergency response partners, who respond to the needs of the community 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, despite the fact that we are not the only organization that plays a crucial role in ensuring public safety.