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15 newly minted constables for the Nishnawbe Aski Police Service (11) and the Lac Seul Police Service (4) received their badges and warrant cards at a special ceremony in Thunder Bay on December 21, 2023 (Adam Riley / Acadia Broadcasting)

Police constables receive their badges

By Adam Riley Dec 21, 2023 | 6:23 PM

Several communities in Northwestern Ontario will be a little safer after today following a badge ceremony to welcome new constables to two Indigenous police services.

15 new recruits have joined the ranks of the Nishnawbe Aski Police Service and Lac Seul Police Service, the first combined event between the two organizations.

NAPS Police Chief Roland Morrison says while the two police different regions, the partnerships forged bring them closer together.

“They’re able to solidify what we do in policing, and that is sharing of information, sharing of resources, that is always important to do. Having those positive partnerships really help our communities because there are times where we rely on people, rely on partners.”

Of the 15 newly minted constables, four are joining the Lac Seul Police Service and as Chief Bruno Rossi explains both the constables and the communities they will serve receive more than just a job and protection.

“They get new friends, they get, there’s new relationships that will be built the kids will look up to them, its a great day. They’re getting their badges they worked hard to be here, they’ve gone through some ups and downs as you know when you go through training, you’re away from your family.”

Rossi says this latest induction brings his service up to 17 members with another three on the way next year.

Meanwhile, the 11 new Nishnawbe Aski Police Service constables bring that service up to around 200 serving members, lower than what the service is looking for but its leadership is optimistic those numbers will increase in the near future.

Among them is Adam Harder, who called the ceremony a “humbling experience” following months of training.

“Its a big thing, my family and I have worked hard to where we are here. It’s very humbling to accept the badge from the Chief and want to do justice for all the guys that have gone before me.”

Harder has been assigned to Cat Lake First Nation, and while he has been to remote communities in the past, he says this will be a brand new experience, one he looks forward to.

Constable Adam Harder salutes NAPS Chief Roland Morrison as he receives his badge on December 21, 2023 (Adam Riley / Acadia Broadcasting)