Q.   What is the Transit Police Service?
A.   The Transit Police Service (common name for the Greater Vancouver Transportation Authority Police Service) will provide policing on and around the transit system supplemental to the jurisdictional (municipal and RCMP) police to help improve safety and security for the public, passengers and transit employees and property.

Q.   What is the background of the Officers in the Transit Police Service?
A.   Most of the Transit Police Service Officers have served with TransLink's Transit Security as Special Provincial Constables and, all but a few, have had significant experience as police Officers with a jurisdictional force or the RCMP. The average Special Provincial Constable has had 18 years of policing experience prior to joining TransLink.

Q.   What is the Transit Police Service's mandate?
A.   To preserve and maintain the public peace, prevent crime and offences against the law, aid in the administration of justice and enforce the laws in force in British Columbia, primarily directed towards:

      (i)   Any criminal activity or breach of public peace that could affect the safety or security of transit passengers, employees or property; and
  (ii)   Conducting investigation and enforcement operations with respect to any unlawful activity on or around transit vehicles and other transit property.

Q.   What the Transit Police Service is not?
A.   The Transit Police Service is not a replacement for the jurisdictional police in Greater Vancouver but a "supplementary" policing unit. The joint cooperative and collaborative relationship will contribute to a "seamless" policing endeavour.

Q.   Why change from Transit Security - Special Provincial Constables (SPCs) to Designated Constables (DCs) - Transit Police Service?
A.   SPCs did not have the authority to respond to criminal and other unlawful activity occurring on or around transit property. SPCs had restricted law enforcement authority and were limited in providing services with respect to SkyTrain, West Coast Express, and the Coast Mountain Bus Company.

The Transit Police Service has the authority and tools to provide an effective and comprehensive response to criminal activity and breaches of law in and around transit property, along with a broader enforcement authority and jurisdiction.

Q.   What powers will the Transit Police Service have?
A.   Transit Police Officers will have the full powers of provincial police, including the ability to arrest people for outstanding warrants, enforce drug laws, and the ability to enforce the Criminal Code (Canada) both on and off transit property. Transit Police Officers will continue to issue violation tickets for fare evasion and other provincial infractions on SkyTrain, buses, SeaBus and West Coast Express.

Q.   Will Transit Police Officers carry firearms and, if so, why?
A.   Yes, Transit Police Officers will carry firearms after meeting provincial policing standards with respect to use of force and firearms qualifications. The reason for issuing firearms comes down to the fact that the police personnel will be "provincial police Officers" with the same authority as jurisdiction/RCMP police agencies.

Q.   What is the difference between the responsibilities for SkyTrain Attendants, Transit Security (Coast Mountain Bus Company - CMBC) and Transit Police Officers?
A.   Transit Police Service responsibilities include:
  • Arresting people for outstanding warrants, enforcing drug laws and the Criminal Code (Canada);
  • Patrolling trains, stations and transit property for added safety and security of transit passengers and employees; and,
  • Enforcing provincial and federal laws, including issuing violation tickets for fare evasion and other violations of the Transit Conduct and Safety Regulations.

CMBC Transit Security responsibilities include:
  • Helping ensure the safety and security of transit employees and passengers, and the protection of corporate assets and property;
  • Handling incidents that are of a non-criminal nature; and,
  • Gathering information and statistics through a quarterly fare audit.

SkyTrain Attendants (STAs) responsibilities include:
  • Providing customer service;
  • Providing first aid and emergency service;
  • Trouble shooting train and station operations; and,
  • Performing fare inspections.

Q.   Which areas will the Transit Police Service focus their time on?
A.   The Transit Police Service will primarily focus on SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express in and around stations, until additional police Officers can be hired and trained to expand deployment.

Q.   Will Transit Police Officers be on the buses?
A.   In the initial stages, due to resourcing, the primary focus will be on SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express. There will continue to be Transit Police Officers stationed at all the Coast Mountain Bus Company depots.

Q.   What is the GVTA Police Board's role?
A.   The Greater Vancouver Transportation Authority Police Board (GVTA Police Board) is responsible for the governance and oversight of the Transit Police Service. The GVTA Police Board is established by legislation, and covers five core functions:
  • Approves financial budget and resourcing levels;
  • Appoints constables and Officers;
  • Establishes policy, goals and strategic direction;
  • Monitors police service; and,
  • Responsible for complaints against the Chief Officer and Deputy Chief Officer, and any service and policy complaints.

Q.   Who is on the GVTA Police Board?
A.   The GVTA Police Board is comprised of five members appointed by the Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. Current members are:
  • Lorne Zapotichny (Chair) - Chief Constable/New Westminster Police Service
  • Bob Rich - Deputy Chief Constable/Vancouver Police Department
  • Al Macintyre - Assistant Commissioner/RCMP "E" Division
  • Dick Bent - Chief Superintendent/RCMP "E" Division
  • Ian Jarvis - Chief Operating Officer/TransLink
  • Baj Puri - Businessman (Civilian)

Q.   How Can I Dispute a Violation Ticket?
A.   If you wish to dispute the allegations on a Violation Ticket issued under the British Columbia Offence Act, please refer to the Payment & Dispute Instructions on the reverse side of the Violation Ticket. You must deliver or mail your dispute notice as explained in the instructions.

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