Members of the Windsor Police Service, City Council, administration and the community alike filled The St. Clair College Centre for the Arts for the official Windsor Police Services (WPS) Swearing in Ceremony for Police Chief Al Frederick, and Deputies Power and Derus respectively.
Those in attendance were presented with the piping in of the Dignitaries, the posting of the Colours (by the Windsor Police Service Pipe Band) and the Swearing In and Oath of Office.
Mayor Francis remarked that the day represented the community and everything that the community holds dear “to ourselves, as well as to our city and our community. Our gathering is a renewal…for the Windsor Police Services, but it’s also a sense of renewal for this community.”
“On behalf of the [Windsor Police Service] Board, I can tell you,” commented Francis, adding, “we took a lot of time and effort in ensuring that we found the right individuals, the right leadership, the right skill-set.”
Francis noted that the greatest responsibility that the men and women of the Police Services perform is to “keep us safe…a responsibility, commitment and sacrifice that I’m reminded of every single morning and every evening.”
Chief Frederick displayed emotion on stage when he made reference to his family and the families of his fellow officers commenting: “It’s a little overwhelming. All police families make a lot of sacrifices and I was recalling that.”
While the WPS has been recovering from a series of high profile scandals, the theme of the day was renewal.
When asked what he was planning on doing with the WPS in the coming days, Chief Frederick remarked that while today was meant for relaxing and enjoyment, that the WPS would “hit the ground tomorrow morning.”
“It’s a great day, and I’m very humbled by this event,” explained Deputy Chief Power, adding, “We’ve had many discussions with respect to the organization, Project Accountability, and the transformation of the organization and I think we’re heading down that path…we’ve been on it for nine months and certainly things look bright.”
Deputy Power also commented that he was very proud of “the service and the fine work that the men and women of the WPS [perform daily].”
Ward 3 Councillor Valentinis echoed the sentiments of Mayor Francis and commented that today represented a “renewal…but there’s been a lot of newsworthy happenings with respect to the WPS, they’ve been in the media a lot, and it’s nice to move forward.”
“With a new team…you’re bringing new vision, new energy, [and] a real commitment,” commented Valentinis, adding, “It’s taken a while to reach this point, following an exhaustive search…we’re very fortunate to have the three of them and we look forward to making this community a safer and better place to live in.”
Jonathon Liedtke is the Features & Opinion Editor for the University of Windsor Lance Campus/Community Newspaper and a reporter for ourWindsor.ca. As a founding member and current Co-Chair of the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee, he is committed to representing, connecting, engaging with and advocating for local youth. He is also a member of Windsor’s “Punk with Horns” band The Nefidovs, and as such, is committed to enhancing and sustaining the arts community.