“As Chair of the Halton Police Board, I express the Board’s strong support of the resolution passed today, and hope that the Province will deliver this new court facility in a timely fashion to address the ongoing and ever-growing issues, including serious health and safety issues, with the current facility,” says Oakville Mayor Rob Burton, Chair of the Halton Police Services Board.
The Region of Halton continues to be served by a regional court facility that is dangerous, unsafe, and unhealthy. The region urgently requires a new court facility to meet the needs of our various justice sector partners, of the community and surrounding area, and a courthouse that addresses the many health and safety concerns voiced by those who must work within the current facility. There is a long list of problematic issues with the current facility which is beyond a state of repair or renovation.
“Our Police Chief advises that the present courthouse cannot be fixed. It is dangerous to the people who have to work there,” says Chair Burton.
On May 8, 2020, the Province of Ontario announced the cancellation of the courthouse project that had been approved to build a new and modern consolidated court facility that would serve the needs of the citizens of Halton currently and into the future. At that time, Attorney General Doug Downey indicated that the province was moving towards shifting away from traditional investments, such as brick-and-mortar construction and moving more services online. He said that this would assist in bringing the Ontario Justice system towards building a modern justice system.
Following that vision, the Attorney General of the Province of Ontario has altered how many court-related services are delivered because of COVID-19 and has moved to modernize the justice system to the greatest degree possible. In support of this transformation and considering the ongoing modernization initiatives, Halton Regional Council believes that now is the time to design and build a much-needed court facility in Halton.
“We urge the Province to rethink their cancellation decision. We don’t have to have an $800 million palace; we just need to have a courthouse that will keep people safe and allow access to justice,” says Chair Burton.
The Halton Police Board fully supports the Halton Regional Council’s call upon the Province of Ontario to design and build a new court facility that safely meets the needs, both current and future, within this Region, giving proper consideration to the ongoing modernization initiatives.
The Halton Regional Police Service echoes the support for this timely resolution made by Halton Regional Council today and we look forward to engaging with the Province of Ontario and the various partners of the justice system in designing and delivering an adequate and sufficiently scaled regional court facility for the Region of Halton – Halton Regional Police Service, Chief Tanner.
About the Halton Police Board
The Halton Police Board is a seven-member civilian Board that provides strategic oversight to the Halton Regional Police Service. Under the Police Services Act, the Board has legislated responsibility for the Police Service’s operating and capital budgets; strategic planning; policies, and priorities. The Police Board’s fundamental responsibility is to ensure that adequate and effective police services are provided to the citizens of Halton Region.