Key concerns of residents Oak Bay align with those of its police department according to survey results.
The online survey included 653 respondents, with about 85 per cent Oak Bay residents.
“We’re very pleased with the interest the community has shown in this,” said Deputy Chief Ray Bernoties.
While one person didn’t answer the question, more than 99 per cent said they feel safe in Oak Bay all the time or most of the time.
While narrative answers were redacted to maintain privacy of those who answered, general response showed isitbilty and community engagement as a top priority for nearly 75 per cent. Property crime was a close second at 73.01 per cent followed by traffic at 52.3 per cent.
Those who have personally interacted with police in the last five years (500 answered the question), gave the department near perfect marks.
“I’m thrilled to see that the public gave us 4.47 stars out of 5,” said Bernoties. “It’s particularly positive given the nature of our work. We often deal with people in their darkest moments, so we’re proud to have such a high rating.”
More than 50 per cent answered “Awesome!” as their “overall impression of the Oak Bay Police” while 40 per cent said good.
The online survey was followed by two public meetings Oct. 30 in two different areas of the community.
“At the community meeting, we discussed many things including policing costs. We were pleased to discuss how we’re the least expensive police department in B.C. and the ongoing efforts we make to stay that way,” Bernoties said.
The survey, an online question and answer period and the two public sessions were all part of crafting the Oak Bay Police Department’s five-year strategic plan.
“Our next step is to develop initiatives to address the priorities set by the public,” Bernoties said. “We look forward to reporting out on this once it’s ready to be published.”
Find the results online at oakbay.ca.
How do you get your news?
Of the 653 who responded, 595 answered the question “What is your primary source for information about policing and community?”
Nearly 35 per cent get information from newspapers while nearly 30 per cent use social media.