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Alberta

Online purchases now safer with Exchange Zone in Ft. Saskatchewan

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2 minute read

April 21st, 2021

Exchange Zone Set Up At Fort Saskatchewan RCMP Detachment

As someone who occasionally makes an online purchase and then needs to set up a place to meet and make the transaction, this initiative by the Fort Saskchewan RCMP looks like a great idea. Here are details from their news release.

The Fort Saskatchewan RCMP along with Protective Services are excited to let the community know about a new exchange zone that has been set up in front of the detachment.  The exchange zone will consist of 2 parking stalls located towards the south end of the Protective Services Building.  The purpose is to allow the public the ability to meet others when they need to exchange something. 

“We encourage anyone making online purchases, or selling items online, to arrange their meetings with the other party here at the detachment.  If someone isn’t willing to meet you at the detachment, I would consider that a red flag, and would be cautious from there on out” said Insp. Mike McCauley, the Officer in charge of the Fort Saskatchewan RCMP.

Another really great use for the exchange zone that the police are encouraging its use for is child custody exchanges.  Cpl. Jennifer Brown, the detachments new Domestic Violence Coordinator said “we actually see a lot of people currently use the front parking lot to exchange kids back and forth.  Some custody orders even have those conditions right in them, so having a designated “Exchange Zone” really makes sense to us”.

It must be noted, that the parking spots are not monitored regularly by the police or staff, however during business hours, one can simply walk into the building if they need assistance.  After hours, people should still call 911 or use the direct line at the front door of the building.

The Fort Saskatchewan RCMP and Protective Services feel this is just another step forward in proactively reducing crime within our community, and are encouraging everyone to start making use of them.

Click to read more on Todayville.

President Todayville Inc., Honorary Colonel 41 Signal Regiment, Board Member Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Arts Award Foundation, Director Canadian Forces Liaison Council (Alberta) musician, photographer, former VP/GM CTV Edmonton.

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Alberta

Alberta ombudsman says she doesn't have the power to probe EMS dispatch consolidation

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EDMONTON — Alberta’s ombudsman says she doesn’t have the power to investigate a complaint about the decision to consolidate ambulance emergency dispatch services in the province.

The complaint was filed by the cities of Red Deer, Calgary, Lethbridge and the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo.

The municipalities have contended that the decision to consolidate the dispatch services to save the government money could put the lives of people in their communities at risk.

In a release late Friday, Ombudsman Marianne Ryan says the decision was technically made by Alberta Health Services, which her office is prohibited by law from investigating.

When the United Conservative government announced the consolidation in August 2020, then health minister Tyler Shandro said the province’s dispatch system would allow for better co-ordination of all ground ambulances and air resources.

At the time, the four mayors of the municipalities, none of whom are now still in office, said they were blindsided by the decision and would fight the change.

“While the issue being complained about clearly affects many Albertans, I am bound by my governing legislation to only investigate matters that are clearly within my jurisdiction,” Ryan said in the release.

“Given the substance of the complaint has been widely reported in the media and that it relates to an issue affecting a great many Albertans, I advised the mayors that I would be making a public statement.”

Last February, a judge granted an interim injunction sought by Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services after the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo stopped transferring emergency medical calls to the provincial dispatch centre.

The municipality, which includes Fort McMurray, stopped transferring calls after its council decided the provincial ambulance dispatch service was putting patients at risk due to delays and confusion.

A lawyer for Wood Buffalo had argued it was in the public interest for the municipality to keep handling emergency medical calls through its own dispatch centre.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 26, 2021

The Canadian Press

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Alberta

Alberta Ombudsman can’t do anything about City of Red Deer complaint about 9-11 Dispatch

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Ombudsman Responds to Municipalities’ Complaint About Ambulance Dispatch

Marianne Ryan, Alberta’s Ombudsman took the unusual step of publicly commenting on a complaint received involving Alberta Health Services.

The City of Red Deer, along with the municipalities of Calgary, Lethbridge and the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo filed a complaint to the Ombudsman regarding Alberta Health Services’ consolidation of ambulance emergency dispatch services.

The Ombudsman Act authorizes the Ombudsman to investigate administrative decisions of government ministries and many related bodies, but the Act specifically prohibits her from investigating decisions of Alberta Health Services (AHS).

“My office thoroughly analyzed the complaint and confirmed that the decision to consolidate ambulance dispatch services was indeed made by AHS. While many government-related bodies fall under my jurisdiction, AHS is not one of them,” stated Marianne Ryan, Alberta’s Ombudsman. “In fact, the Ombudsman Act specifically states that my powers of investigation do not apply to health authorities. My ability to investigate AHS decisions would require a change in legislation. While the issue being complained about clearly affects many Albertans, I am bound by my governing legislation to only investigate matters that are clearly within my jurisdiction.”

Investigations by the Ombudsman are conducted in confidence, and it is the Ombudsman’s general practice not to comment publicly on complaints, especially ones that are not being investigated.

“Given the substance of the complaint has been widely reported in the media and that it relates to an issue affecting a great many Albertans, I advised the mayors that I would be making a public statement.”

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