By Kim King Steward OPSEU Local 302
The new Durham Consolidated Courthouse at 150 Bond Street in Oshawa had its opening day on Feb 8th. Although it may be the new home for Justice in Durham Region, it is not a welcoming place for Probation Officers.
At the any other Court in the Province of Ontario, Probation Officers need only show their badge and photo ID to enter the Court building. Probation Officers are now being told by the Durham Regional Police security screeners that it is not good enough, and that Probation Officers must be subjected to the full search protocol even though they have presented their badge and photo ID . In effect, as designated Peace Officers of the Province and Officers of the Criminal Courts , Probation Officers are being restricted by a municipal Police Force in gaining access to our own provincial government building.
What makes this story even more absurd? The employees of the on-site Tim Hortons are able to show their ID and enter the Durham Consolidated Court House without going through the security screening. Perhaps the special relationship between Police Officers and Tim Hortons is more than just a myth.