Police office starts up community service role

The Fort Frances OPP detachment is back to having two community service officers on staff, with Cst. Cameron Howard putting in his first day as a CSO on Monday.
Cst. Howard is taking over the town CSO position which has been vacant since February. He joins Cst. Mark Boileau, the rural CSO, in the district operation of several programs, including the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) initiative.
Cst. Howard spent a good part of the summer training for his new position. But it isn’t entirely new territory to him since his past assignment was as the liaison officer to Fort Frances High School.
“The big difference is there’s no shift work at this point–it’s straight days,” he said.
Cst. Howard views his role as “a contact for students and for people in the community and the media so we can work together better.”
“It will be nice to have somebody to work with again,” noted Cst. Boileau, who has been covering both the town and the rural desk for the past several months.
“You can certainly organize things within the community better,” he said. “And it won’t be as hectic come school time.”
Although he is contracted as the CSO for Fort Frances, Cst. Howard stressed he isn’t going to restrict himself to town issues. Both officers will be taking turns covering the media releases for the district, and occasionally one may be called to cover for the other in their DARE classes.
“Mark and I are going to be working together as a team,” Cst. Howard said.
“It’s give and take,” echoed Cst. Boileau, noting this year he’ll be starting up the grade 7/8 DARE program in both the rural and town schools.
“He’ll go out and do my classes in the country while I’m doing the middle-school program,” he added.
Cst. Howard spent his first morning on the job lining up schools for this year’s DARE program. He said he’s looking forward to his new job although admitting he will miss being on patrol.
“Every since I’ve started policing, I’ve enjoyed the work,” he said. “I’m going to miss some of the interesting calls we go on.”