Nunavik police force faces staffing shortage

Sûreté du Québec lends 24 officers to work with KRPF

The KRPF’s detachment and headquarters in Kuujjuaq. The force is facing a shortage of officers this summer and has now brought in 24 SQ officers to work in the region on a temporary basis. (File photo)

By Sarah Rogers

The Kativik Regional Police Force is facing a major staffing shortage, following the resignation of about a quarter of its officers.

Over the last month, the Nunavik force saw 16 officers quit their jobs, leaving roughly 48 officers to police the region’s 14 communities. The force is considered fully staffed with 65 officers.

“It’s become critical,” said KRPF chief Jean-Pierre Larose.

Larose said it was not anything in particular that prompted the resignations, although it’s common for staff to leave at the beginning of summer.

The KRPF typically sees a high turnover; last year Larose told a provincial commission that an average of 70 officers leave the force each year—more than the number the force even employs at one time.

KRPF officers tend to be in high demand for their northern policing experience, Larose said.

“There’s a labour shortage in every sector, but particularly in policing,” he said.

The Sûreté du Québec, for example, has recently opted to eliminate its polygraph test for job applicants to help speed up the hiring process of 500 new officers it hopes to bring on.

But the same police force is lending a hand to the KRPF in its time of need. Under a new agreement, the SQ has provided 24 officers to work in the region over the coming months, Larose said.

The force is now pairing up more experienced KRPF officers with their new SQ counterparts to ensure there is a balance.

“It’s us, the KRPF, who remain in control of policing in the region,” Larose said.

Now, the force has turned its efforts to recruitment.

While the KRPF has been recruiting from police colleges in the Maritimes in recent years, the force is now forging a new relationship with the Ontario Police College that would help its students earn their credentials to work in Quebec.

The force is also recruiting retired officers from southern Quebec to do short- and medium-term contracts in Nunavik, Larose said.

The KRPF has also launched an internship program for secondary students and graduates in Nunavik, to help drum up interest among young Inuit to work in policing. This summer, three Inuit students are doing security and prevention work with the force.

Larose hopes by the end of the year to have filled most of his staff positions.

The police force only just signed a long-awaited funding agreement with both the provincial and federal governments, which will finance the addition of 24 new officers to the KRPF over the next five years.

“We have the money, but not the employees,” Larose said. “It’s a bit disappointing.”

Visit the KRPF’s website for information about how to apply for a policing job in Nunavik.

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(16) Comments:

  1. Posted by nunavimmiuq on

    Wow, very sad indeed, but, my wishful thinking is to see more Inuit Officers! not southern brought officers, after all the Kativik meaning a place to meet, Regional meaning whole Nunavik, Inuit were suppose to own the Policing!

    That was the plan at way beginning when KRPF was build 1995 for Inuit Policing!

    • Posted by INUK on

      I v thought of joining the KRPF , but then , i would have to arrest , family members and freinds ,because , i have seen them under the influnce of alcohol and some of them have been arrested. Good luck , if you a inuk and become a poice officer in your home town

      • Posted by Nunavimmiuq on

        This new KRPF recruitment was suppose to hire Inuit Officers as it planned way beginning, SQ Inuit tried their arresting what ever was played in a role, there were number of arrests made in family conflicts, I applause them back then.

        Nowadays, KRPF book was suppose to support Inuit Officers if dealing with direct families, that, their non-Inuk partners would have to deal with the suspect(s)

        It’s never too late to train an Inuk Officer! This way, Police brutalities would be shortened or controlled by Inuit!

  2. Posted by Chet on

    As was said about the Raptors star player Leonard you Can’t knock a guy for wanting to return home.

  3. Posted by Nunavimmiuq on

    Now, is that a good Police example?

    Salluit assault victim, 48, killed by police vehicle; BEI investigates, how could an Police Officer miss-parked his Police vehicle?!

    There are so many incidents with KRPF Non-Inuk Police Officers, something fishy with the system, I think it is best for Surete du Quebec Police to come back to the Force, they are handling their work from A-Z. They recruited Inuit Officers back then above all 14 villages. The Inuit Officers were more trusted back then.

    • Posted by Now we know on

      Now we know why the man was killed by a KRPF vehicle with no one inside of it – they didn’t have enough police!

      But with KRPF who kill assault victims when responding to a call, who needs more of them? Maybe it’s good for us they are short staffed – less of them around to run us all over!

  4. Posted by Citizen on

    Policing is a brutal job. So many people are negative towards the police. Most of the officers are good people. Ok, we could have a bad one here and there, but it’s few and far between. Nunavik challenges the police to top capacity. Our little communities need so many police officers. I know many larger communities in this country that have only two or three police officers. But nunavik need triple that number, or even more. I’m not sure how many police are in kuujjuaq, or puvirnituq, but it’s ridiculously high number. High numbers representing the crime. If alcohol wasn’t abused in such a terrible way, crime would go to such low numbers. Most of the crime is about the inability to process the drink. It’s too bad, that the government don’t focus the funds towards eliminating alcohol from the life of Inuit. It’s a national health crisis.

    • Posted by Nunavimmiuq on

      Thanks to Southerner’s ancestors that have brought useless alcohol to North!

      they should of teach Inuit first that, alcohol was brutal, causing many deaths since it arrived to North!

      If only we were smart enough to sue them, if we only would of been well educated learning law and all, they would be in pretty sued state, many of us in still grieving state, many tried treatment by force without agreeing, and kept going back to treatment, it’s life term pain that, we are carrying, now, why not try to understand our state.

      After all, Nunavik is not the only place becoming out of control, look at South people, many results of murder, death from accidents from alcohol, so many racism in tole!

      • Posted by Horse won’t drink on

        A man once lead a horse to a water hole and tried to force it to drink, but the horse refused. Yes, southerners have their problems, and I wonder who forced them to drink. Choices are what god have given mankind, but mankind blames god , the devil, and other mankind for his problems. Who can we sued, hum,? As I sit here today having a beer, I know it’s going to be ok. I’m not going out to bother others. I’m not going to fight my family. I’m not going to drive. My choice is my choice, and tomorrow, the worst of my problems will be a hangover, notwithstanding my liver, but trouble with the law, no way. That’s opposite of the northern mentality, but that the choice of the northern drinker.

  5. Posted by Adult Ed on

    Knowledge is empowering. With news it is not the everyday work as usual that grabs the front page news. 99 times things can go well then f@#@ up once and that will be the story.

    • Posted by Once in awhile on

      Yes, once is enough too, if it’s a serious crime, like people only died once from a homicide, or a suicide. Assault can be very serious first time around also.

      • Posted by In response on

        In life shit happens, denial of the fact does not alter fact.

  6. Posted by Stressed out on

    The police are stressed out from dealing with intoxicating individuals. That’s the saddest of all. When you have to deal with trouble, it’s dealing with trouble, but it’s the over and over again nuisance of alcohol. It’s the same for the medical and nursing, and the social workers. Dealing with the intoxicating individuals. The mental burnout. Seeing the same old drunken souls over and over. That why we are having shortage. It’s degrading to work in a drunken environment day in day out. No change. The crime from the intoxicating is a different type of crime, in that you can look around the communities and feel hopelessness in a future. How can a drunken, intoxicating society have a Future? You tell me. Is it self government? But who will be in the government? This is not good.

    • Posted by Nunavimmiuq on

      Good!

      Then, SQ Police must come back, so they will hire Inuit Officers again.

      KRPF close the book!

    • Posted by Inuk of Nunavik on

      The most embarrassment Police Force running in Canada wide Police Force. Too many results of Police brutality! even to young people that, they deal with.

      SQ should just close the book of KRPF with Public Security Ministries, bring back the real Policing SQ! Bring back Inuit SQ’s!

  7. Posted by Since beer came home on

    Most of my life I lived where beer and the drink was in home territory. It belong among our crops and food. Up north me changed my life because of it. No longer, do I see the beer drinker. What I see is unbelievable. I see the beer and I see what has become of beer. My old beer, the great of drinks, has gotten into very bad hands. I’m ashamed and sad for my beer. The same beer that my ancestors has made for centuries. Why has it gotten us in that place, to be abuse by the ones that understand nothing about my beer ? My 2ant my beer to not go there. No more.

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