On Friday in this space, we dealt with Prince Albert’s ugly numbers in the Statistics Canada study on crime.
The city sits fifth in Canada among communities of more than 10,000 people in crime severity, which is a terrible number. We’re tempted to think, however, that they’re viewed differently in at least one spot.
Statistics day must be like Christmas if you’re a police chief anywhere on the planet.
If arrests are down, you’re able to trumpet the success of the initiatives that you’ve undertaken and the hard work of your officers in enforcing the rule of law. The bad guys clearly know it isn’t safe to be naughty here.
If the arrests are up, they can be approached in a variety of ways by the chief.
• We’re reporting the arrests differently in our stats.
• We’ve been on the streets working harder to nab the bad guys so we arrested more people.
• Our new programs are paying off.
• We’re in desperate need of more resources and if the city doesn’t give us what we need, it’s bound to get much worse.
We’re not arguing that there isn’t a bit of truth in those statements, but you can rest assured that a journalist will hear one of those positions put forward when they make the call for an interview.
Prince Albert Police Service Chief Troy Cooper is a good man and he cares about the people in the community, even when they are marginalized. But he stuck to the script when interviewed on Thursday.
But if you blame Cooper and his team for those numbers, you’re missing the point.
In the wake of those statistics, it’s important to remember that just like it takes a community to raise a child, it takes an entire community’s resources and attention to convince a crook not to steal.
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A young Saskatchewan woman deserves congratulations after swimming the English Channel on Tuesday.
Meghan Chisholm, 19, of Swift Current, crossed over from Dover in the United Kingsom to Cap Griz Nez in France. The grueling endurance event took her 14 hours and 39 minutes as tides forced her to swim an extra 14 km, making the total trip 48.6 kilometres.
It’s not just the swimming that would wear down most people.
With waves of up to three metres high, Chisholm also had to endure jellyfish stings on her arm, leg and nose.
There’s an old saying by Ironman triathlon co-founder John Collins that perfectly encapsulates what she must have been feeling.
“You can quit if you want, and no one will care,” Collins famously said. “But you will know for the rest of your life.”
Chisholm had that to consider along with the fact that many people back home watching her attempt this epic feat.
The granddaughter of a World War Two veteran who once stood on the beach at Cap Griz Nez and looked back the cliffs of Dover, Chisholm’s steely resolve and athletic ability deserve our recognition.
Prince Albert Daily Herald