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New police program places emphasis on engagement

Bowen Island RCMP will meet with people at Artisan Square

The Bowen Island RCMP will be debuting a new community meet-and-greet initiative later this month.

‘Coffee With A Cop’ is taking place at Artisan Eats on Wednesday, November 29, from 10 am to Noon. The outreach program is meant to offer people the chance to engage with police outside of a traditional setting. Fellow Sea to Sky RCMP members with the Squamish detachment also took part in the activity in October.

“It will be an informal chance for the people to ask questions about our job, about any issues that the community has, or really about anything that people want to talk about,” says Constable Bryan Cuthbertson. “It doesn’t have to be focused toward policing, it’s just a chance for people to know that we’re here and we’re open to talking.”

Community policing was an area Bowen’s officers were lauded for during an RCMP Town Hall earlier this year. The trio are a common sight at island events, venues, or driving around.

“The team that you have in Bowen is extremely strong,” said Sea to Sky RCMP Officer in Charge, Inspector Robert Dykstra at the March event. “They’re engaging, they’re friendly… I really let them do their own thing because I know that they do a good job.”

Cuthbertson says some topics he anticipates talking about are the day-to-day activities of Bowen Island RCMP, and what the long-term plans are for the look of the detachment. In Cuthbertson’s case it also provides an opportunity for the officer – now two months on the island – to get to know more community members.

“I can’t wait to see who comes out,” says Cuthbertson.