Action to be taken on Downtown Security

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Downtown SSM

SAULT STE. MARIE, ON – At the council meeting last night a discussion was had about downtown security and some actions will be taken.

A report to council has been ordered to supplement a second report asked for by a previous council. The motion asks city staff to look into all aspects of downtown security. The motion read in part – to create a safe downtown, the city must invest in technology or resources to create the safe place our downtown strategy strives for.

Councillor Shoemaker noted why he thought this was important. “All of council on a fairly regular basis, we see the headlines, we have outreach from downtown businesses,” said Shoemaker. “Obviously if we want our downtown to be a place that people feel safe attending at then we need to make it a place where they are safe attending at.”

Councillor Dufour told those in attendance of some of the realities he has faced going downtown everyday. He thinks the community safety program is important.

“For myself I’ve lived this reality every day having have been a victim of crime downtown as well to being had to pick up needles before employees get to work. All those things are things that I’ve personally experienced,” said Dufour.

He continued “I think it’s important that we that we proceed both with this community safety plan, but also with many other initiatives that are underway through social services through increased investments in our in our homelessness system.”

The mayor acknowledged he hears a lot about this issue and believes this is an important discussion to be had.

“I think we can all agree that this is really important,” said Provenzano. “I certainly hear a lot about it I know councillors Dufour and Vezeau-Allen hear a lot about it and I expect Councillor Shoemaker and the remainder of you also do.”

This report doesn’t have a timeline to come back to council. The previous report to council on the provincially mandated Community Safety Plan should be back no later than January 2021.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Agree with all comments. City council especially Provo should be totally embarrassed except for the few trying to get things done. We’ve had crime on our property and no police no nothing so I did what needed to be done!! Protect me!!
    Agree also with no lights on Bay Street, Albert East and flashing lights from 10 PM -8AM. Bay St is Provo’s pet project and pushes all others to the bottom of the list like another leash free zone st or near Bellevue Park so let’s can drink and swim safe, not at the sewage plant on Queen St or some abandoned schoolyard with no water facilities ..

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  2. City needs cameras downtown,,flashing red solar lights at Gore & Albert,less red lights on Bay st we have had 2 years without,worked fine & more use of educated skills of people at city hall?

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  3. If they want to improve the state of the city, they should be investing in expanding addiction treatment options (SSM still has almost no supported detox options other than the hospital) expanding their capacity for crisis and social workers, and support programs such as the Community paramedics. How about investing money in actual social supports instead of repaving bay street?

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  4. City council and the mayor should be embarrassed by this city’s crime.
    Every year Sault Ste Marie moves up further in the “Most Dangerous Cities to Live” list.
    https://www.macleans.ca/canadas-most-dangerous-places-2020/
    When you compare SSM to ‘Toronto the Scary’, Sault Ste Marie’s crime is actually getting worse than Toronto’s and faster.
    The SSM murder rate index is actually only 0.81 lower than Toronto. The SAult Ste Marie 5 year increase in crime is about 5 times worse than Toronto’s.
    Toronto 5 year change – increase index of 6.97 Sault Ste Marie 5 year change – increase index of 33.39
    In terms of worsening crime that puts us at #22 overall compared to Toronto at #101 overall.
    Toronto’s overall crime severity index is 66 but Sault Ste Marie’s is far higher at 113.
    You are now far more likely to be a victim of crime in Sault Ste Marie than you are in Toronto.

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