Submitted. The Province celebrated the exceptional, diverse contributions to community safety of four longstanding volunteers and one non-profit organization during Crime Prevention Week, Nov. 1-7, 2016, through the annual Community Safety and Crime Prevention Awards.
Pictured at right: Les Talvio and Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Morris.
This year’s recipients, by home community and award, are:
Surrey’s Rob Ross – winner of the Award of Distinction, a premier award honouring his extraordinary lifetime contribution and commitment to crime prevention and community safety. A 40-year volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Langley, Rob has provided mentorship, leadership, life skills and problem-solving ability to at-risk youth and has worked with young victims of violence. Beyond dedicating an average of four hours per week, Rob has maintained a lifelong connection with some of his dozen “little brothers” – recently attending one’s 50th birthday! A teacher and principal, Rob has also served as a board member and president and helped the program to recruit more volunteers.
Vancouver’s Det. Const. Dale Quiring – winner of the Community Safety and Crime Prevention Award, which recognizes exemplary leadership in developing innovative projects and key activities or initiatives to promote safe communities. A hate crimes detective with the Vancouver Police Department’s Diversity and Aboriginal Policing Unit, Det. Const. Quiring has established close ties with many downtown community organizations and members. Through a training video, policy development and launching a Safe Place program, he has worked to foster understanding and respect between transgender community members and police, and has worked to reduce discrimination and increase safety for LGBTQ people.
Abbotsford’s Les Talvio – winner of the Youth Leadership Award, recognizing exceptional commitment to working with youth. A street outreach worker with Abbotsford Community Services for many years, Les has helped vulnerable and homeless youth to transition off the street, reducing their risk of exploitation or involvement in crime to meet their basic needs. In 2004, Les opened Cyrus Centre, a local emergency shelter that has served more than 1,000 youth. Now in four locations, Cyrus Centre offers food, shelter, access to showers and laundry, employment counselling, life skills training and education programs.
Nelson’s Dana Barter – winner of the Service to Victims Award, which celebrates exemplary leadership in providing services and supports to victims. As victim services co-ordinator for the Nelson Police Department, Dana has more than 18 years in the field. Her leadership, care, compassion and commitment have earned her respect from victims and people throughout the Nelson area, providing clients with the highest level of care. In recent years, she has taken on a tremendous amount of extra work as a victim service worker to help ensure coverage in neighbouring areas.
Restorative Justice Victoria (RJV) – winner of the Restorative Justice Memorial Award, which recognizes commitment to innovative partnerships that have advanced restorative justice. Since 2005, RJV has served Victoria, Esquimalt and Oak Bay, supporting those affected by crime through victim-offender conferencing, peace-making circles, victim-offender mediation and referrals to community services. Through years of research and program development, RJV has developed best practices – providing education to citizens; building partnerships with police, Crown counsel and the community; training facilitators and mentors; and developing and implementing an extensive evaluation program.
The awards acknowledge the efforts of volunteers, non-profit organizations and other local public safety partners that are integral to reducing crime, violence and victimization in the community and provide critical support to the efforts of law enforcement and others in the justice sector. These efforts complement significant investments in the provincial Guns and Gangs Strategy, policing, community safety and victim services, which are supporting safer and stronger communities throughout B.C.