Victoria police announced Monday that they are launching a new initiative to respond to theft concerns from downtown businesses.
The initiative is called “Project Downtown Connect.” Victoria police said “Project Downtown Connect” is scheduled to run for four months with officers having a “consistent, high-visibility presence” in the downtown area. Officers will talk to business owners and staff about recommended security improvements and applicable bylaws.
Police said officers will also talk to the business community about how and when to report incidents to the police.
According to Victoria police, the goal of the project is to respond to the concerns of the business community with respect to theft and to support local businesses downtown.
“It is a priority of VicPD to increase police visibility downtown,” Victoria police Chief Del Manak said in a statement. “Our officers will continue to engage with local businesses, to build relationships, and to improve the safety of our community.”
The project was piloted by members of VicPD’s Community Services Division (CSD) in December 2019. Police said the feedback has been positive.
“We are excited to see VicPD more present in our downtown core,” Jeff Bray of the Downtown Victoria Business Association said in a statement. “This initiative is a positive step in enhancing the safety of business employees and customers in our community.”
Police said due to resource constraints, the initiative will be staffed by officers from across the department on special duty assignment.