By Greg Stannard, Sergeant, Claresholm RCMP detachment
Over the last while the Claresholm RCMP Detachment has been receiving many calls and complaints directly to our administrative line.
This has put an additional amount of work on our support staff here in Claresholm.
While the members and staff here will not turn you away for calling or coming to the detachment to report a crime or other incident, the best way to reach us to make a complaint, is to call the 24-hour complaint line. This number does ring in Red Deer, and for many, they feel they are not getting the best service. While it may not be as personable, because you know one of us, or are familiar with someone from this office, it is in fact the best way to get the services you require.
The folks up in our Operations Communications Centre are trained to ask all the questions required, get the information to the police that will be responding while creating an electronic file for the members here to use.
This can all be done locally as well, but we use a less efficient system, as well as it takes away from the administrative tasks that our staff are already working on. Because of this, it is much easier to miss something, or get a member to attend as soon as is appropriate for the type of call.
So to make this as simple as possible, here is a breakdown of which numbers to call and when. You can save these numbers by your phone, or in your phone.
Call this number when there is an emergency. Examples would be where a crime is being committed right now. This number is for all emergencies, whether you require police, fire or ambulance. This line is a priority and supersedes all other calls.
This is the complaints line. If you are reporting a crime or other complaint where you need police assistance because something has already occurred, this is the number to call. This number is answered 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. These folks will be certain to get the pertinent information required, create a file and assign a police officer to investigate it. They prioritize all calls, depending on type of call and what other calls have been received.
This number is our administration line. It rings here in Claresholm and is answered 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday to Friday except lunch, from 12 noon to 1 p.m., and any holidays. The rest of the hours this line is answered sporadically. It has a voice mail that is checked on weekdays only. This number should be used to contact a member for an investigation that is already ongoing, or for any other day-to-day office business that is not related to a crime.
By using these numbers appropriately, it will help us get you the best possible results overall. We appreciate your co-operation.