Two new initiatives from the Carleton Place Police Services Board received an enthusiastic response when presented to town council’s planning and protection committee on Oct. 3. Both address situations of increasing concern, from helping keep track of loved ones with dementia to ensuring safety for those engaged in acts of online trading that require meeting a buyer or seller.
In the first instance, the board had been inspired by a project in Prince Edward County that allows for electronic monitoring and tracking of individuals suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia. By outfitting loved ones with a radio transmitter bracelet (at a cost of approximately $200), police would be able to track down someone if they have gone astray and become lost.
According to the town’s director of protective services, Les Reynolds, it would cost approximately $15,000 to purchase a receiver and provide officer training, an amount he says could be shared among municipalities under Lanark OPP jurisdiction.
While Reynolds said “it’s not a done deal yet,” all of the county’s police boards seem on board, as is the medical officer of health and the Alzheimer’s Society.
In another new initiative, a “safe trade site” will be explored in front of the town’s OPP detachment, allowing people trading or purchasing items online to carry out their final transaction in a very public place where the imminent presence of police officers would deter potential acts of malfeasance.
“Increasingly, people are selling or trading items online and there is of course always some concern to inviting people you don’t know to meet at your house,” Reynolds said. “We’re all aware of an incident a few years ago where a gentleman met two guys to sell his half ton truck and he ended up being murdered.”
While Reynolds said that example was an extreme, individuals still worry that the sale of, for example, a diamond ring, could result in a robbery if the potential buyer has not been honest. “The idea here is that we want people to be confident that if something seems untoward, there’s help nearby.”