Blue Line

The time for education is over, says Police Chief

November 25, 2020  By Bird Bouchard

(CP) As Chatham-Kent is now entering its ninth month of handling a global pandemic, Chatham-Kent Police Service Chief Gary Conn said the time for education is over.

According to Conn, Chatham-Kent citizens have had “ample time” to learn the health and safety measures they’re expected to follow; therefore, violations will no longer be tolerated.

“The time of education, it’s over. People have had eight months to get educated and learn the laws, and govern themselves accordingly. Going forward, certainly for the last month and certainly, on a go-forward basis, we will be taking a rather zero-tolerance approach to these offences.”

Conn said people have had enough time now to get up to speed on the laws.


“People have had eight months to get educated and learn the laws and govern themselves accordingly,” the Chief said.

Conn added the vast majority of citizens have been compliant. He said while there have been charges laid, it was only a handful. The Police Chief added the vast majority of interaction police have had with citizens has been for educational purposes and predominantly warning.

Chatham-Kent’s Chief Administrative Officer, Don Shropshire, echoed Conn’s statements. He said, for the most part, people in Chatham-Kent respect the limits set by the Public Health Unit.

“The vast majority of the people that we talk to, once a bylaw enforcement officer or a police officer or a public health person talks to a group, they’ve usually been compliant and said, `No problem. We understand. We weren’t aware of those restrictions’, said Shropshire.”

Shropshire said he has not heard of any problems with rule-breakers for at least three months.

Chatham-Kent’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Colby, has issued orders under Ontario’s Health Protection and Promotion Act to protect the public and stop the virus’s spread.

Bird Bouchard, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter – THE RIDGETOWN INDEPENDENT NEWS


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