Ottawa Police see 20 per cent drop in demand for service due to COVID-19 pandemic


The COVID-19 restrictions and people spending more time at home resulted in a 20 per cent drop in service requests for Ottawa Police officers this spring.

A report for the Ottawa Police Services Board shows demands for service through calls and online reports dropped by 18,600 in the April to June period, compared to the same period in 2019.

"With businesses, facilities providing recreational programs, public libraries, schools, child care centres, bars and restaurants, and performance venues required to close, residents stayed home other than for essential travel," said the report for Monday's board meeting.

"The result was a 20 per cent decline in demand for service compared to the same period last year."

Online reports filed with Ottawa Police dropped by nearly 30 per cent, with police saying that was driven by businesses being closed.

Ottawa Police also report a 71 per cent decline in Priority 1 calls for serious incidents.

The Ottawa Police Service says since the start of July, demand for service has been trending upward.

"This is expected with the Government of Ontario’s gradual reopening plan for the Province. Results for July and August are in line with the historical five-year average."