I hear that Winnipeg will be having a new police chief soon.
I only hope that’s true.
In reality, the office of chief of police has been vacant for more than a decade.
Under the virtually non-existent leadership of the people who have been occupying that position, Winnipeg Police Service has transformed itself from a respected law enforcement agency into a self-serving Crown corporation.
Law enforcement has been so laggard that a culture of entitlement to break the law has enveloped the entire city. People do as they please because they know that there are no consequences for their actions.
A police cruiser could drive right by and would turn the other way at the sight of a crime, big or small. I’ve seen it happen.
Oh sure, police are in full force when there’s major accident. They’re stringing their yellow tape, covering a five-mile radius around the accident scene. And they’ll sit there blocking the scene for the better part of a day or more. Because they can. And they’ll give you a snarly attitude to go with that.
If you dare object, they cry foul. You don’t respect law enforcement.
Sadly, law enforcement and the WPS have long since parted company.
It’s no wonder that the vacant chief of police position did not attract many good candidates. It’s a job that needs a take-charge person. Someone who is willing to take on the challenge of his or her career. It is not a “mind the store” job.
I hope that Devon Clunis has what it takes. Because Winnipeg doesn’t need a football stadium. It doesn’t need more festivals. It desperately needs a law enforcement agency more than anything else.
I have a sinking feeling that it’s not about to get one anytime soon.