InsideToronto has the report on the meeting about consolidating 12 and 13 Division. There is much of interest.
It sounds like 12 will be moved to 13 division—a detail that had been lost on me. 12 is housed at Trethewey and Black Creek. 13 Division is very far away: at Allen and Eglinton. Your corespondent had thought they’d be amalgamated at some third spot.
By closing or amalgamating stations, the goal is to be even more accessible to communities, Watts said.
“Back in the day, police were on foot. Then, technology arrived, with radios and computers. We needed a hub for that,” Watts said. “We want to give every officer a hub, by providing a tablet where information can be sent so that they can get out in the community more. Police officers don’t work in buildings or cars; they work in the community.”
The doublespeak is astonishing: less is more! Farther is closer! Closed is open!
Let me give a word of advice to spin doctors everywhere: much of your business is based on the faulty idea that we can’t handle bad news; accordingly, you dissemble. And then, you wear it. That’s what we have here: Watts won’t tell us what we know: that farther is farther. Hows does that look on him?
Imagine he told the truth: “The Toronto Police budget is a billion dollars. That’s nuts. Crime is way down. We can afford to loosen up a bit and save some tax money along the way. Yes, salaries are the real killer, but Jesus, do you want to take on the police union?”
It’s honest. It’s truthful. It blames the right people: politicians and their employers.
And if I had a dollar for every time I heard that tablets are the answer: to small classrooms, shitty teaching, students who can’t write, and now, breathtakingly, to crime.
Mr Watts, sir, tablets are never the answer.¹ You are saying—let’s be clear—that an iPad can bring cops closer to people. Have you never talked to someone while they are texting? Screens do not bring people together.
I’m not a criminologist, and I won’t pontificate. Maybe moving divisions will hardly affect policing. Maybe distributed policing is very doable. I get the feeling, though, we’re not off to a good, honest start on an issue that affects our community. I know I’m not the only one still sick from all the spinning I’ve had here.
¹I retract that: they are the answer to family road vacations.