Edmonton’s police chief, Dale McFee, has been meeting with Edmonton residents to figure out ways to slow down crime in the city. He recently met with many residents from Mill Woods to discuss the matters. On top of that, McFee has been traveling to several neighborhoods around the city for open talks.

“(Ward 11) Councillor (Mike) Nickel and I were talking and I thought it was pretty important that I come out and hear firsthand what’s going on in the community,” he said. “I think it’s just important that I have a feeling and understanding of what’s going on throughout our city and not better place to do it than the communities.”

Nickel added that he doesn’t want to wait until crime rates grow before getting more police involved in the city. “I don’t want to wait until it gets out of control,” he said. “I’ve been getting ever-growing complaints about not just aggressive panhandling, but (also) much more serious issues like carjackings, break and enters. As I look into this more, we’re finding this is not just a problem in Mill Woods. This is clear across the city.”

Nickel says that it’s not going to be cheap to get more officers out there, and that “everybody has to chip in,” to make it happen. “It’s not just (about) asking city hall for money,” Nickel said. “I go out there and raise money and ask companies to participate in these programs.”

“That particular one (problem of liquor stores being robbed,” needs a new solution,” McFee said. “We’ve got to look to technology, we’ve got to look at how we can actually change the behaviour on this because we just can’t continue to have the same response.”