Staff Sargent Guy Landreville presented the RCMP annual update to Steinbach City Council. 

Landreville says they have five main priorities that they are working on. 

These priorities are visibility of the police, crime reduction in property crimes such as break and enters and vandalism, and a respectful workplace. 

Then there is also crime reduction in organized crime, which is what the General Investigation Section (GIS) focuses on, as well as crime reduction in traffic which they have a dedicated officer for. 

Traffic offenses in 2023 as a whole are down from 2022. 

Landreville says this could be partly because of their recently created traffic position, as they have a new officer that is dedicated to that position right now. 

“And so far he’s doing tremendous work, and we are trying to improve on that. We’re trying to do more traffic-oriented work. We hope to be able to do more on the traffic side then we have in the past.”  

He mentions that it would be great to have a second officer that focuses solely on traffic. 

“One member is great, I think more is better. I think it’s very important because it’s not only safer, but it takes care of the visibility aspect as well.” 

He says with Steinbach’s rapid growth, council should consider hiring another traffic officer. 

“I think we have to be cautious. Everything is increasing, we got new subdivisions coming in, new people moving in, we got a big Events Centre getting built, more traffic.” 

Mayor Earl Funk notes they still have the traffic division from the province that works out of the detachment. 

Funk asks if they also do tours in our city, which Landreville says they do. 

“That’s not their main focus right now, but I will send them requests and ask if they do specific hotspots that are brought up by the public, and they do. And I report back to the different RMs that have requested those patrols.” 

Landreville adds the numbers of officers are increasing in that division. 

Right now, the RCMP in Steinbach have a total of 18 officers, currently they have a ‘hard vacancy’ and are working with staffing to fill that role.  

They also have one ‘soft vacancy’ which will not be replaced, as soft vacancies are due to things like maternity leave and sickness. 

Jake Hiebert says he is happy to have a dedicated traffic personnel in the City of Steinbach. 

“More than 20 years ago I advocated for a special dedicated placement to do just traffic in Steinbach, and I was excited when council passed that resolution to hire that extra man I think a year and a half or two years ago.” 

He explains why it’s important to him. 

“If we have extra patrols, extra enforcement, extra warnings, extra visibility, it would cause less stress on paramedics, police, hospitals, less physical damage to people and of course more safety to the residents.” 

Hiebert says it would be great if they could get MPI to sponsor that second person. 

Funk says council always considers adding officers, and on his time on council, estimates they have hired an additional six to eight officers. 

“But the request has to first come from the RCMP advisory, and then from there, Councillor Zwaagstra would bring it to council, and then it would be discussed.” 

He explains it’s definitely not out of the question, but there is a process they would have to go through. 

“It would be a budget item, so it could even take a year because it would have to go through two study sessions, one daytime and one weekend one.”