Statement by Mayor Cecil Clarke regarding specialized police services in CBRM

December 2, 2013


I have exercised my authority, under emergency management, as it relates to the safety and security of the citizens of the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.

Today I have informed the Attorney General's office of my order to the Chief of the Cape Breton Regional Police Service, Peter McIsaac, to request the RCMP, under their mandate to the province as the provincial police service, to be prepared to provide emergency police services for the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.


BACKGROUND: NSGEU Local 1995 has informed the Cape Breton Regional Municipality they are withdrawing their participation in four Police special units: Emergency Response Team (13 members), Public Safety Unit (23 members), Training unit (7 members) and Dive Team and Marine unit (5 members). Total: 48.

The CBRM has been advised that specialized services have been withdrawn by members of the NSGEU bargaining unit #1995. This action is in response to arguments surrounding a recent case of a police officer charged and convicted of Breach of Trust and Obstruction of Justice.
The city can not and will not let public safety and security be unnecessarily compromised.

I understand the union is arguing that CBRM does not provide legal protection for their officers. We do, in fact, but the charges in this case were not as a result of action in accordance with the officer's duties. They are also arguing that the officer's pay was not continued indefinitely during the legal process, but it is within the Cape Breton Regional Municipality's legal right to suspend pay.