Grand Forks Citizens on Patrol seek Formal Agreement with City


Grand Forks Citizens on Patrol were recently supported in their request to City Council for a formal agreement.

The Citizens on Patrol group consists of 17 volunteers, mainly retirees, with bi-weekly patrols in a city-owned van and close collaboration with Grand Forks RCMP, including direct contact to on-duty officers.

550 volunteer hours were reportedly logged last year.

Monday, May 29th, heard a request to approve city vehicle usage, city gas funding, vehicle maintenance and Citizens on Patrol vehicle signage/decals to a maximum of five years.

Councillor Christine Thompson was keen to execute a formal agreement:

“Well I think this service is an extremely valuable one to our community and I don’t have an issue with providing the Citizens on Patrol with a vehicle….”

Chief Administrative Officer Duncan Redfearn explains they used to use a gassed-car from Public Works, but now they park at the police station:

“They’re generally accessing that vehicle after hours, at night and so they don’t have access to public works to fill and we’ve kind of pulled away from giving too much access. Not because we don’t trust individuals, it’s just the more that gate opens and closes there’s always a risk that somebody else is in that yard as well….”

While Council did ultimately vote to execute the formal agreement, Councillor Rod Zielinski had hoped that staff would first report back to council on fine details.

RCMP Sergeant Peppler wrote a letter of support expressing the vital role and importance of Citizens on Patrol through their collaboration.