LETTER: Community policing in the bubble

Reader David Beringer praises police and bylaw officers for their work at recent climate march

At the Sept. 20 youth-led climate strike I witnessed some very good work by Nelson police and by-law officers. As I volunteered to assist with blocking traffic to allow the Fridays for Future march to safely travel along a planned route, I was hoping that my efforts to ensure this happened without incident would be adequate.

My apprehension soon disappeared as I saw the professional manner in which police and by-law officers efficiently and calmly monitored the situation and then did what was required to allow the participants to exercise their democratic right to protest. It was an example of community policing in action.

Traffic was blocked as required; officers showed respect to the protesters and non-protesters alike; they didn’t engage in discussion or attempt to “move things along.” One potentially dangerous incident I observed, where a man driving a lifted 4×4 truck tried to drive around a blockade (which included children barely half as tall as his truck was high), was defused by an officer who spoke to the offending driver.

Nelson is a very fortunate place to live for most residents — it is often referred to as a “bubble.” It seems that many consider this “bubble” to be a sort of “titanium armour” that will protect Nelson against all manner of threats. That is not accurate.

Nelson is quite vulnerable on a number of fronts: fires, extreme weather, food shortages and social unrest. Particularly the latter has slipped under the radar of the comfortable middle class. As the full dimensions of the climate and extinction crisis manifest themselves globally, nationally, and regionally, there will be no “bubble” capable of isolating Nelson and its residents.

As more people — particularly parents — realize the gravity of our situation, the social ramifications of climate change will manifest. Then we will need a police force well-versed in community policing principles. Last Friday’s professionalism gave me some hope that we are charting a positive course in this regard. Let’s continue to build trust and co-operation while most of us still enjoy our lives “in the bubble.”

David Beringer

Nelson

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Trucking company fined $175K for Lemon Creek fuel spill

Decision handed down last Friday in Nelson court

Missing Nelson woman found dead

Police say there is no evidence of a crime in the death of Heather Gunderson

Interior Health leading the way with innovative therapy for stroke patients

Percentage of ischemic stroke patients who received treatment has risen dramatically

Police ID man found dead in Vallican after probe leads to no arrests

Forty-seven-year-old Aaron Graham, of Vallican, has been identified as the man killed

Greg Scott: CBC program sparked outrage in Nelson in 1970

News items from 50 years ago from the Nelson Daily News

VIDEO: Wet’suwet’en supporters vow to keep protesting at B.C. legislature

Supporters say they will continue ongoing action to hold government accountable

VIDEO: Province promotes ‘lifting each other up’ on 13th annual Pink Shirt Day

Students, MLAs, community members gathered at B.C. Parliament Buildings Wednesday

Prepare for new coronavirus like an emergency, health minister advises

About 81,000 people around the world have now become ill with COVID-19

B.C. residents in Wet’suwet’en territory have right to police presence: Public Safety Minister

Nevertheless, Bill Blair said officials remain ‘very anxious’ for the barricades to come down

Winnipeg police investigating graffiti on RCMP and other buildings

Manitoba Justice Minister Cliff Cullen denounced the vandalism

B.C. seniors’ watchdog calls for better oversight after recent problems at Retirement Concepts care homes

‘There is no financial incentive right now to be a good operator’ - Isobel Mackenzie

B.C. city rebrands with new logo, cheeky slogan

‘Langford, where it all happens’ is the City’s new slogan

B.C. Liberals call for ban on foreign funds to pipeline protesters

Sierra Club, Wilderness Committee back Coastal GasLink blockades

Donations pour in for family who lost father, son in fatal crash on B.C. highway

Mike Cochlin and sons Liam and Quinn were travelling on Highway 5A

Most Read