This week Ottawa Police are walking the beat once again patrolling areas known for high crime. The move marks a return to community policing, an approach to making streets safer, that was abandoned two years ago.

Neighbourhood Resource Teams (NRTs) will focus on three areas: Vanier/Overbrook, Carlington/Caldwell and Heron Gate/South Ottawa. The teams include Community Police Officers, School Resource Officers, Traffic Services and Frontline officers.

These areas were chosen because of the high number of calls responding to property crimes, shootings, stabbings and homicides, according to OPS.

Officers plan to learn more about the issues in these communities by doing some simple – speaking with residents and building relationships.

Friday, NRTs walked up and down Montreal road greeting people and making conversation.

“The NRTs are designed to increase police presence and address community concerns about crime and social disorder,” said Inspector Ken Bryden, with the Ottawa Police Community Relations.

The decision by Ottawa Police comes as the service begins its return to Community Policing, a policy that was changed in 2017. Insp. Bryden says the service was looking to ‘find efficiencies’ and as a result community policing was cancelled at that time.

“The thought was it would be absorbed into the front line patrol officers role, so the men and women responding to 911 calls, it didn’t work out that way, we didn’t yield the results that we thought,” Bryden said.

Bryden said the goal now is to learn more about the issues in each of the three communities and develop a strategy to end crime there.

“A long term solution to stop what is occurring in their neighbourhood,” he said.