An example of a Surrey Police cruiser showcased at Mayor Doug McCallum’s State of the City Address at Civic Hotel on May 7, 2019. (Photo: Amy Reid)

Survey suggests 83 per cent of Surreyites ‘favour a referendum’ on policing transition

Survey was conducted by Pollara Strategic Insights on behalf of the National Police Federation

A new survey conducted by Pollara Strategic Insights on behalf of the National Police Federation suggests 83 per cent of Surrey residents “favour a referendum before a final decision is made on the issue of replacing the RCMP in Surrey.”

Pollara Strategic Insights was commissioned by the NPF to conduct an online survey of 800 “randomly selected Surrey residents,” ages 18 and above, between January 21-31, 2020.

Twelve per cent of the respondents oppose a referendum, and seven per cent said they “don’t know.”

Moreover, 44 per cent indicated “I am satisfied with the service we receive from the RCMP and should stay the course,” while 33 per cent indicated “I have concerns with the RCMP, but would support retaining them if there were significant improvements,” another 17 per cent indicated “We need to replace the RCMP with a municipal police force” and seven per cent indicated “don’t know.”

What does Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum think of this survey?

“The mayor will not be commenting,” the City of Surrey’s manager of communications, Oliver Lum, confirmed Friday.

Concerning the timing of the survey, at this stage in the process, Brian Sauvé, president of the National Police Federation, said, “As for the timing of NPF involvement, it comes down to our certification was only in July 2019 and our board of directors confirmed in January 2020.

“So a combination of funding and resource issues. However, we are here now and doing what we can with the resources available to us,” he told the Now-Leader.

A Pollara document summarizing the survey’s key findings states the data “has been weighted by age and gender within region, and weighted to reflect South Asian population, as per the latest census data to be representative of the adult population in the City of Surrey.

“Non-probability samples cannot be assigned a margin of error,” it states. “As a relative guideline, we have provided margins of error for a probability sample of this size. The margin of error for a probability sample of this size is ± 3.5%, 19 times out of 20.”



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

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