TRANSCRIPT: Chief Troy Cooper talks violence

Staff ~ The Prince Albert Daily Herald
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Prince Albert Police Service Deputy Chief Kelly Stienwand and Chief Troy Cooper, from left, participate in Thursdays’ 10th Annual Honouring our Brothers and Sisters Memorial Walk. 

Receiving praise throughout Thursday’s memorial walk against violence, the Prince Albert Police Service reiterated their commitment with participation.

 

Prior to walking through the city for the 10th Annual Honouring our Brothers and Sisters Memorial Walk, Chief Troy Cooper addressed the crowd at city hall.

The following is a near-complete transcript of Cooper’s speech:

“We’re walking today to bring attention to the issue surrounding missing and murdered aboriginal women and to ensure that that discussion about violence in our community stays alive.

“We’re also walking to provide support to Marlene Bird -- the most recent member of our community to be victimized.

“Marlene’s not just another violent statistic; she represents an issue that is much bigger than Marlene herself. Because of Marlene, we are reminded of the gross overrepresentation of aboriginal women who are victims of violence.

“The police service members who are here today have two roles. First of all, they’re members of the community. They’re parents of daughters. They are concerned about violence as community members; where they live as Canadians. They want to know that we have to understand violence against women and talk about it before we can make any changes. Before we can make it better and to have positive change.

Every victim deserves our best our best response. They deserve empathy, not apathy. Troy Cooper

“Even though it can be overwhelming at times, and beyond our reach, we are making a difference in our community. Through events such as … important events like we have today.

“Our officers here are also representing the response and the system that handles cases of violence. We understand how critical it is that victims receive justice, not judgment. Our investigation and the attention the victim receives cannot be based on gender or on culture. If the organizations that are designed to protect us fail -- if the systems themselves are not sensitive and unbiased, then the rest of the community will have a hard time making the changes we want to see.

“It’s OK to question to system. It’s OK to question the organizations out there to protect you; including my own.

“Our policing community clearly understands our responsibility. Every victim deserves our best our best response. They deserve empathy, not apathy, and we’re committed to play our part to address this important issue.”

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