28 October 2013



Executive Director, Ottawa Police Services Board



Chief of Police, Ottawa Police Service








That the Ottawa Police Services Board receive this report for information.




Attached for the information of the Board are excerpts from letters of appreciation / thanks received from the public since the last regular meeting for services rendered by members of the Ottawa Police Service.




(Original signed by)



Charles Bordeleau

Chief of Police


Attach. (1)


Responsible for the report:  Director John Steinbachs



A number of comments were received from members of the public relating to the police, first responder and ordinary citizens in response to the OC Transpo bus collision with a Via Rail train.  Here are two examples of those comments:


Date Received:  27 September 2013

From:   Member of the Public

Excerpts from letter:  I was on the 76 bus that crashed into the train last Wednesday and I wanted to take a minute to share some comments with you about the situation on the ground.  At the site, as you know, the first responders were there as quickly as possible and behaved with maximum professionalism the entire time.  What you may not know is how they consistently demonstrated compassion and kindness for those of us who wanted to help but, frankly were unable to due to the shock of the incident. I saw many examples of this, including first responders just listening with obvious empathy, holding hands, and just being available.  Finally, there were countless times when I saw people who were on the bus helping each other out - from the two people who helped me crawl out from under the partition, to the man who offered me his shoes (one of mine went missing) to the young woman who went back into the bus after she had left it for someone's keys.  You get the idea.  So here we are - in the midst of a senseless terrible tragedy we see the very best that people - those that are trained to respond and just regular people on their way to work - can be.  I just hope that as the enquiry unfolds we can all remember this.



Date Received:  25 September 2013

From:   Member of the Public

Excerpts from letter:  I am sending this email to follow up to a phone call I made. I was on the train going to Toronto.  After the accident the police came onto our car; they were very professional and efficient. I am sure it must've been a difficult day for them. They put us on a bus so that we wouldn't have to see the site of the accident.  The driver of the bus we were sheltered in was very nice to us as well. In fact the first medical responders, the fireman, the police and everyone on scene with the exception possibly of the media behaved admirably.  Again I want to thank you I hope all your officers are safe. God blesses you and your department.



Date Received:  21 June 2013

From: Amnesty International Group 56

OPS Members:  Sgt Sandra Sparling and Cst. Adam Collins

Excerpts from letter:  On behalf of Amnesty International Group 56, I just wanted to thank the officers who escorted us on our march on June 8 on behalf of indigenous peoples in Colombia as part of Amnesty's Annual General Meeting.  The officers were respectful and courteous and they helped protect us as we navigated our way around the streets.  I hope you will convey our thanks to those concerned and let them know that their service was appreciated.



Date Received:  25 June 2013

From:   Member of the Public

OPS Member:  Cst. Mélanie St. Louis

Excerpts from letter: Thank you for caring for my mother's case with such sensitivity, and delicateness.  You are in an occupation that contains on a day to day basis, anything but those characteristics -- a very dangerous job, thankless at times, and dealing with the miscreants of society.  Again, I want to thank you for handling such a delicate matter so professionally.  The Force should be recruiting more candidates with attributes similar to yours. 



Date Received:  27 July 2013

From:   Member of the Public

OPS Member:  Cst. Sandra Ferguson

Excerpts from letter:  I called 911 when I saw two small children left unattended in a parked car. The operator I spoke with was very helpful, and ensured I did the right thing by calling. Within a few minutes, Cst. Sandy Ferguson was at the car, speaking to the people involved. I was so impressed with the speedy response. Later, I received a call from Cst. Ferguson letting me know the children were both alright and thanking me for placing the call.  All in all, I was extremely impressed with the response to the call, and also how thoughtful it was to let me know everything turned out alright. Well done, and thank you for your service to our community.



Date Received:  2 August 2013

From:   Member of the Public

OPS Member:  Cst. Marilyn Warren

Excerpts from letter: I wish to commend one of your officers, who helped me when faced with a very difficult situation.  As was my routine every day, I tried to wake up my mother, who was 84 years old. Feeling that she was cold and not breathing, it was evident that she had passed on during the night.   After calling 911, the first officer at my location guided and helped me from the very beginning to the very end.  She kept me well informed as to what was about to happen and what to expect.  Cst. Warren showed true compassion, generosity and sincerity, and you should be very proud of her.  Should this compliment make its way to her, please pass along my thanks again, and although it was a very difficult morning for me, I enjoyed knowing that she was there to help get through it.



Date Received:  7 August 2013

From:   Member of the Public

OPS Member:  Cst. Jonathon MacLean

Excerpts from letter: We are writing to thank Cst. MacLean for his assistance, understanding and compassion in a matter that dealt with our son last week.  Cst. MacLean proved to be a very polite, respectful and honourable young police officer.  He went above and beyond the call of duty to assist us with a situation involving our son.  We know you don't often receive compliments but this young man deserves to be commended for his work.  He certainly honours the uniform he wears and most certainly went into law enforcement to help people.  We are very grateful for his assistance and just wanted to let his superiors know what a fine young man he is.  Thank you again Constable MacLean.



Date Received:  September 17, 2013

From:   Member of the Public

OPS Members:  Cst. Tippins and Cst. Chuchryk

Excerpts from letter: The two police officers who came to our house recently were very respectful. The officer in lead really impressed us with his knowledge on mental illness and the manner in which he was explaining and talking to my brother. We were all very taken back by his consideration and way of speaking. Thank you for your kindness.  It is very hard for families dealing with mental illness and I wanted to thank you for being so polite and showing care for my brother's health and in convincing him to seek help from his psychiatrist. Thank you and keep up the good work.



Date Received:  September 26, 2013

From:   Member of the Public

OPS Members:  Front desk staff

Excerpts from letter:  I want to convey a positive message regarding my recent interaction with your staff.  I dropped in to the main location on Elgin Street for a criminal record check required to volunteer.  Staff at the reception desk and those who processed the background check were extremely helpful and considerate in making the process a pleasant experience.  Even when leaving, they escorted us to the front door and were sure to ask if we knew how to find the bus stop and get safely to our destination.  As a “blind” person, it is those little gestures that make day to day activities just that much easier to carry out.  Thanks to the staff and keep up the good work!



Date Received:  30 September 2013

From:   Member of the Public

OPS Members:  Cst. Andrew Worth and Cst. Silvijo Setka

Excerpts from letter: I have to be honest, prior to this, my view of the Ottawa Police was rather negative, until these two officers changed my view.  Cst. Andrew Worth and Cst. Silvijo Setka came to my home to keep the peace while my troubled 18 year old son got his belongings from my residence. While waiting for my son, they listened to me (when others had never done that).  They offered life advice and insight to a teenage boy's mind and thinking and helped me understand how things look to him.  When my son arrived, they created a kind, yet firm environment and engaged him in conversation about future (and how it could be if he continued this way of life) and how he could create a better future for himself if he changed his ways. My son listened to them like he never did to anyone, and gathered his belongings in peace. They then asked him and I to sit down with them for a few minutes and to try and talk and make my son understand why things are that way, why he is away from his family and what it would take for him to be back; they were the most amazing people my son had ever met. My son had always told me he hated police officers before and that they were always there to hurt him. He wrote me a text saying: "I guess there are still a few good men among police officers, I wish these were my brothers, or family, because they are the best police officers and some of the best human beings I have ever met; I wish I was like them."  I don't know how to tell you what this act of kindness from Cst. Worth and Cst. Setka meant to my son and I, but I can tell you, these officers made a huge difference in our lives, they are the ones I want to see, protecting us, guiding our youth and hopefully my son and all those youth who lack mentors like them.  I am so grateful to live in a city you are protecting. You are our heroes.