Ontario Enhances Safety for Probation and Parole Officers in the North

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New leading-edge monitoring device helping keep staff safe in remote locations

THUNDER BAY, ON – The Ontario government is providing probation and parole officers in the North, with new safety devices for use when travelling to and through remote regions. The new devices will help ensure the health, safety and well-being of frontline staff by providing two-way voice and text communication as well as enhanced live monitoring such as fall and no-motion detection, silent alarm activation and missed check-ins that allows for quicker notification to emergency personnel in crisis situations. The device’s direct link to satellite capability also enables monitoring when staff are working indoors.

“Each action we take to protect the safety of frontline corrections workers is an important step forward in strengthening public safety in our communities,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. “The deployment of these new safety devices is part of our government’s enduring commitment to provide probation and parole officers with the tools, resources and training they need to do their jobs safely and effectively.”

Probation and parole officers regularly supervise and report on offenders to ensure they are complying with their probation requirements set by a judge. Those who work in remote areas face unique challenges such as isolation and the inability to dispatch emergency services. While performing their duties, officers will now be able to rely on the new leading-edge devices to help ensure their safety. To date, Ontario has invested approximately $85,000 to further enhance the health and safety of probation and parole officers through this initiative.

Following a successful pilot in fall 2019, the new safety device was launched in probation and parole offices across Ontario’s Northern region and in one office in the Eastern region. The devices replace outdated equipment measures and better protect officers in the field through safety monitoring with satellite communications, location technology and automatic incident detection.