Lethbridge City Council voted 6-2 on Tuesday afternoon to look for help from the Alberta Sheriffs in dealing with tent encampments in our city. In the summer of 2022, there was a shooting at a tent encampment located near the Civic Centre Track.
Lethbridge Mayor Blaine Hyggen has written a letter on behalf of the city asking Alberta’s Public Safety and Emergency Services Minister, Mike Ellis, for assistance. The motion is asking for help to start in May for a 6-month trial basis.
Hyggen said there isn’t a planned number of Alberta Sheriffs that would come to our city, but the officers would work hand-in-hand with Lethbridge Police to help curb crime at the encampments.
“They don’t work apart from them. They got to make sure that they’re all working together on a collective goal and so of dealing with the issues that we have at hand. But it’s important that they do work together. And so, of course, we’re going to forward the letter and the information to the police commission to make sure that they’re aware of this. I did speak with the chair of the commission yesterday as well, and that is of incredible importance, so that they’re all on that same playing field. And we know that the work that’s being done within our community.”
Councillors Belinda Crowson and Jeff Carlson voted against the motion.