Letter to the editor 3, Dec. 22, 2015

What public security?

Dear Editor,

I'm getting very concerned about having no real police protection in Hudson, and it’s getting worse.

With all the car thefts lately in various parts of Hudson I was suspicious of the bearded man with a bag, standing/lurking on the corner of Ridge and Cameron one night last week (about 7:30) and called 311 to see if they could investigate. They did nothing but suggest I call the police (911) who had difficulty knowing where Hudson is, what I meant by a break-in (was my car broken?) and what stealing items from my car meant. Communication with (and response from) any Sûreté du Québec (SQ) officer is becoming more and more difficult lately.

The Hudson council's recent strategic plan mentions trolleys, arts & culture centre, metering water for businesses, etc. but not one word about public security which (with the present road conditions) I'm sure are major concerns of most Hudson residents. There is really no public security in Hudson and almost nothing being done about it which is a disgrace considering the taxes we're paying and the bills for the SQ, community patrol, etc. which is more than double what our own police cost before Quebec decided to tax communities for the cost of the SQ which was never intended to police communities (and don’t). Do we have to pay for it and also do it ourselves with a re-invigorated neighbourhood watch?

In fact I understand the SQ presence is becoming even less. We are fortunate not have any serious crimes (rape, murder, child abduction, etc.) lately because of our lack of police protection to deal with these crimes. However, there are two real problems with inadequate police resources in the area. I have no confidence in any crime statistics published because there are so few police to collect these statistics or fill in any reports and also it is so difficult to contact the police to make a complaint or to complete and file a report. Secondly, it is very difficult to prosecute anyone breaking the law if a prosecutor does not have sufficient evidence to believe a prosecution will succeed in court, and with so few police around to collect this evidence the likelihood of many crimes not being prosecuted is much higher. This is great for criminals, not so great for residents.

It is time we demand some actual service for the taxes paid, or have our council reject the use of the SQ, and withdraw from any MRC arrangement with the SQ, and return our own police force.

Trevor Smith


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