November 1, 2023

Surrey, B.C. – The following statement is from Brian Sauvé, President and CEO, the National Police Federation following the Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia’s October 30 report, recommending that the care of intoxicated people in custody should not be the sole responsibility of police. 

“Our Members are called to fill social gaps far too often, including overwhelmed healthcare and addiction beds and services, in the absence of adequate funding for social services across the province and country. For far too long, police and police resources have been the only available supports for marginalized people in crisis. Both our Members and those impacted deserve better.” 

More and better social supports were a key recommendation and theme from B.C.’s Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act, and the NPF has long advocated for increased funding across a spectrum of supports. Most recently in our 2024 Pre-Budget submission, we asked the B.C. provincial government to invest $80 million over two years for social services and the continuum of care, including the police in B.C., to improve response to mental health, addictions, and other complex social issues.  

Those suffering addiction deserve to be treated with compassion and respect by healthcare professionals who are most qualified to support them. Increased funding for social services will allow police to concentrate on core policing duties in all communities around B.C.”  

About the National Police Federation: 

The National Police Federation (NPF) is the largest police union in Canada, representing ~20,000 Members of the RCMP. We are focused on improving public safety in Canada for our Members and all Canadians by advocating for investment in policing and other related supports and services. This includes calling for required resourcing, equipment, and supports to enhance community safety and livability in the communities we serve, large and small, across Canada. 

For more information: 

NPF:  LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram 

Media Contact 

Sarah Kavanagh
Coordinator, Media Relations
[email protected]
(604) 842-6864