RCMP assure British Columbians they are on the job during COVID-19 crisis. (File Photo)

RCMP there for the public during COVID-19 crisis, says B.C.’s assistant commissioner

Dwyane McDonald said the RCMP are working closely with local governments and health officials

The RCMP in B.C. will continue to do their jobs and serve the public during the COVID-19 crisis.

Assistant commissioner Dwayne McDonald, the acting commanding officer of the RCMP in the province, said that with the ever fluid and evolving global health situation, and the province declaring a state of emergency on March 20, the RCMP continues to work closely with the local, provincial, and national health agencies to monitor and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said he understands that these are uncertain times.

“As an emergency response agency, the BC RCMP are continuing to work through this,” McDonald said.

“We have existing protocols and procedures that deal with emergency situations, and that includes pandemics. Our police officers deal with exposure to communicable diseases and other hazards regularly, so our training and procedures have always focused on reducing those risks, to ourselves and the communities we serve. It is about planning, preparation, prevention, and protection.”

McDonald said that as a result of this preparation, the Division Emergency Operations Centre is active, and is monitoring and overseeing the coordination of police resources at the provincial and national level.

He said this includes monitoring the RCMP’s business continuity plans, assessing the force’s essential service levels and equipment, providing updates on its safety and prevention measures to its employees and collaborating with its partners.

“At the local policing level, our detachments are continuing to provide policing services and ensuring community safety,” McDonald said.

“Detachments are continually assessing their service and program options, and where necessary, reducing front counter services, cancelling events, and enhancing their precautions. We have also instructed our police officers and personnel around what safety measures should be taken when interacting with individuals at greater risk, what officers should do if they come in contact with an individual suspected of being infected, and when, where, and how they should use the appropriate personal protective equipment.”

McDonald said that as an employer, the RCMP is also there to support all its employees.

He said the RCMP continues to provide employees with regular updates, implement prevention measures within the workplace, and are supporting telework options.

“At this time, for everyone, education on this matter is so important,” McDonald said.

“By increasing employee awareness around proper hygiene etiquette and health protocols we can do our part during this health emergency.”

McDonald said that these are truly unprecedented times.

He said the RCMP is asking for the public’s patience and understanding.

“And more importantly, we are asking for your support,” McDonald said.

“We are all members of the community and all of us and our loved ones are being affected by this global pandemic. Everyone has a role to play in response to mitigating this health issue. We are committed to ensuring that the BC RCMP will be there when British Columbians need us. Public safety is our priority. As our province takes measures to flatten the curve of COVID-19, we thank the public for their mindfulness and cooperation.”

Coronavirus

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

Just Posted

Lake Flashback: Museum preserves future, new hope for a pool, and a murder

Welcome to Lake Flashback. Reporter Sarah Simpson has been combing through old… Continue reading

Cobble Hill man dies in ATV accident south of Nanaimo

Incident happened on backroad Friday night in Nanaimo Lakes area

Drivesmart column: The registered owner is responsible

Have you ever stopped to consider the risk involved in handing your keys over to someone else?

Aquatic Centre renovations starting soon

More space promised for crowded fitness and aquatic areas

Mary Lowther column: Nutrition in our food on the decline

When crops don’t contain the minerals they need, they cannot provide other nutrients we depend on.

VIDEO: Injured bald eagle rescued in B.C. First Nations community

Bird suspected injured in fight, whisked off to Coquitlam rehab

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Toronto Raptors’ Ujiri says conversations about racism can no longer be avoided

Thousands have protested Floyd’s death and repeated police killings of black men across the United States

B.C.’s Central Kootenay region declares state of emergency, issues evacuation orders

The evacuation alert covers all areas except the Cities of Castelgar and Nelson

‘I’m afraid’: Witnesses of wolf attack on senior near Prince Rupert worried about safety

Frank Russ shows where the unprovoked wolf attacked his father

Protesters prepare to rally against racism in front of Vancouver Art Gallery

Rally is in response to the deaths of black Americans and a Toronto woman

Protesters rally against anti-black, Indigenous racism in Toronto

Police estimated the crowd to be between 3,500 and 4,000 and said there was no violence

Feds earmark $1.5M to support recovery of B.C., Indigenous tourism

B.C. money will be split between Vancouver Island and Indigenous tourism

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Most Read