Halifax Regional Police is pleased to inform the public of the successful first year of the Downtown Safety Strategy.
HRP recently reviewed the effect of the Downtown Safety Strategy and the reported numbers of assaults on Peninsular Halifax are as follows:
- The number of serious assaults (assault causing bodily harm, assault with a weapon and aggravated assault) is down in the downtown core from a five year average of 68 incidents to 32 incidents last year (-52%). In Peninsular Halifax, the five year average of 340 incidents was down to 239 incidents last year (-29%).
- The total number of assaults (including serious and common assaults) is down in the downtown core from a five year average of 196 incidents to 161 incidents last year (-17%). In Peninsular Halifax, the five year average of 902 incidents was down to 707 incidents (-21%).
Over the last several years, statistics confirmed that the majority of assaults on Peninsular Halifax occurred in the downtown bar district on weekends during the early morning hours. It appeared that alcohol was a contributing factor in most of these incidents and half of these assaults actually occurred inside licensed establishments. On June 1, 2012, HRP implemented a refocused strategy that was aimed at curbing violence downtown and making the area safer for the public. It primarily addressed assaults and public intoxication. Since the inception of the strategy, we have targeted our patrols between the hours of 12 midnight – 5 a.m. each Thursday, Friday, Saturday and any Sunday of a long weekend. The strategy involves beat officers wearing traffic vests to increase their visibility and actively engaging in conversations with the public, patrons and staff. Officers look for people who have had too much to drink and are more at risk of being involved in an incident either as an instigator or a victim. Officers also conduct walk-throughs of licensed establishments to address the assaults occurring inside. HRP is committed to the safety and security of the downtown core users, therefore officers will continue to implement the Downtown Safety Strategy.