With a true history and spirit of collaboration, the majority of the Municipalities across the North Shore - as well as the organizations who serve them - have come together to create one, collaborative Community Safety and Well-Being Plan. The North Shore’s CSWBP will strengthen how we collaborate with partner organizations serving residents living in our region and will provide a community of support for committees already tackling the important issues that impact safety and well-being across North Shore. Specifically, this CSWBP provides a model for collaboration, planning and action that will shape how the Municipalities in the North Shore identify and respond to current and emerging issues through ongoing engagement with community stakeholders and regular assessment of local data. In many respects, the Plan formalizes and coordinates the strong history of collaboration in the North Shore, and it also documents and builds on successful initiatives that are already improving safety and enhancing the well-being of our vulnerable populations.
Collaborative, cross-sector Community Safety and Well-Being Planning leads to numerous benefits for individuals, the broader community, and participating partner agencies and organizations, including:
- enhanced communication and collaboration among sector, agencies and organizations;
- stronger families and improved opportunities for healthy child development;
- healthier, more productive individuals who positively contribute to the community;
- increased understanding of – and focus on – priority risks, vulnerable groups and neighbourhoods;
- transformation of service delivery including realignment of resources and responsibilities to better respond to priority risks and needs;
- increased engagement of community groups, residents and the private sector in local initiatives and networks;
- enhanced feelings of safety and being cared for, creating an environment that will encourage newcomers to the community;
- increased awareness, coordination of an access to services for community members and vulnerable groups;
- more effective, seamless service delivery for individuals with complex needs;
- new opportunities to share multi-sectoral data and evidence to better understand the community through identifying trends, gaps, priorities and successes; and
- reduced investment in – and reliance on – incident response.
The Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services has been working with multi-sectoral government partners and local community and policing partners to develop the Provincial Approach to Community Safety and Well-Being.
This work began in 2009 with a partnership between the Ministry and the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police (OACP) – together, these two groups initiated the development of a provincial response to crime and victimization.
This collaboration has culminated in both resources and legislation intended to support all communities across Ontario to develop their own Community Safety and Well-Being Plans.
Municipalities MUST have a CSWBP - It's the Law
New legislative amendments outlined under part XI, Section 143 of the current Police Services Act (1990) mandates every municipal council to prepare and adopt a Community Safety and Well-Being Plan (CSWBP).
Municipalities have the discretion and flexibility to develop joint plans with surrounding municipalities or First Nation communities [s. 143(2)], although First Nation band councils are not required to engage in Community Safety and Well-Being Planning by legislation.
This new legislative requirement came into force on January 1, 2019 [s. 143(2)]. Additional legislative requirements related to the CSWBP process include:
- Establishing a multi-sector advisory committee [s. 145(3)].
- Conducting consultations with the advisory committee, members of the public, including youth, members of racialized groups and of First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities, as well as community organizations that represent these groups [s. 145(6)].
Contents of the plan must include [s. 146]:
- Identifying priority risk factors (e.g. including, but not limited to, systemic discrimination and other social factors that contribute to crime, victimization, addiction, drug overdose and suicide);
- Identifying strategies to reduce the prioritized risk factors (e.g. new services, changing/coordinating existing services);
- Setting measurable outcomes.
There are also requirements to publish a completed CSWBP – online, in print for review by anyone who requests it, and in any other manner or form determined by the municipality – within 30 days after adopting the plan [s. 149(2), O. Reg. 527/18].
As the Advisory Committee moves Community Safety and Well-Being Planning forward, the following phases of work will be extremely important:
- Community and organization engagement
- Identifying priority areas of risk and strategies to reduce the prioritized areas of risk
- Ongoing community consultation, especially with people with lived experience/vulnerable populations most impacted within each priority area of risk;
- Achieving greater coordination and collaboration between existing organizations and supporting consolidation where appropriate; and
- Providing annual progress reports from the Advisory Committee, to participating Municipal Councils, and to the communities at large.
Community engagement will include:
Community surveys - Residents of Municipalities across the North Shore (Town of Spanish, Township of the North Shore, Town of Blind River, Municipality of Huron Shores, and the Town of Thessalon) are invited to complete our 2021 Community Engagement Survey.
This survey will be repeated as the implementation of our Plan begins, in order to ensure we are evaluating the impacts of our actions for the Community Safety and Well-Being Plan for the Municipalities across the North Shore.
*Due to COVID-19, no face-to-face engagement is occurring at this time. Please check back regularly, as virtual engagement will occur in 2021.