A new non-profit launched in B.C. Tuesday (May 26) has a mission to “support LGBTQ2S+ law enforcement members and build a strong, positive, inclusive connection between law enforcement and the community.”
“Although the society has a strong relationship with several law enforcement agencies, it is completely independent and is not directly involved in law enforcement matters,” says a post on the website.
Membership is $25 a year, or $15 for an associate.
The Out On Patrol board includes Constable Brittany Eaton, a tactical unit member stationed at the RCMP’s E-Division headquarters in Surrey. She has a passion for helping the communities she serves with a focus on ending violence against women and girls, according to a bio on the organization’s website.
Eaton said a similar organization called Serving With Pride exists in her native Ontario.
“A lot of members locally were talking about having an organization like this pop out in B.C., where there’s so many different services – Vancouver Police, West Van, the RCMP and others,” she said Tuesday. “I think we’re all aware of community engagement stuff that needs to happen between police and the public, including repairing relationships with the community. Peer support is also something we’ll be doing.
“Education is huge for us,” Eaton added, “and we’d like to get out there and do in-school presentations and provide support for youth, things like a scholarship fund for youth, those kinds of things.”
She said Out On Patrol was to be launched during Pride month this summer, but the COVID-19 pandemic put in a wrench in those plans.
“Now more than ever it’s important to reach out to those who are in isolation, online,” she said. “So we’re doing engagement that way right now, to start.”
I am honoured to have the privilege of being the inaugural President of @OutOnPatrol! Our dedicated Board of Directors has been working hard for over a year to bring this to life and we are very excited to finally launch! #OutOnPatrol #LGBTQ2S+ https://t.co/k6fLQFbf91
— Chris Birkett (@OutOnPatrolPres) May 26, 2020