Late last year, the Vancouver Police Department received increased community feedback about rising crime and disorder in the city. The resulting survey provided some fascinating statistics:
- 78% of all respondents are concerned about crime in Vancouver
- 74% of respondents said crime has gotten worse in Downtown Vancouver in the past 12 months
- 58% are concerned about crime in their neighbourhood
- 33% changed a behaviour in the past year because of crime
- 20% of business owners had been victim of a property crime in the past year, and
- 18% of business owners considered closing or moving to a new location due to crime
With 2020 seeing a 260 per cent increase in shoplifting incidents involving weapons, the Vancouver Police Department decided to take action, creating ‘Project Arrow.’ This month-long public-private initiative enlisted the help of business owners and security companies to help prevent violent shoplifting and return confidence to the city’s downtown core. Blackbird Security was honoured to play a role in this vital initiative.
Preventing Shoplifting in Downtown Vancouver
Throughout early 2021, Blackbird Security has partnered with the Vancouver Police Department and our national retail partners based in Downtown Vancouver on this important ‘Boost and Bust’ initiative. Within a month, Project Arrow had provided a huge success, with 130 shoplifters arrested, 35 weapons seized, and a total of 268 total criminal charges.
Communications with the VPD throughout Project Arrow were handled by Blackbird Security supervisor, Arpan Singh. Arpan is one of the superstars of our security team, leaning on his passion for loss prevention to help serve our clients in the retail security industry in Vancouver for the past two years.
With his advanced security training and Occupational First Aid (Level 2) certification, Arpan’s skills in incident de-escalation and conflict resolution are typical of the best-in-class training received by Blackbird Security guards. With his focus on the safety of staff and customers alike, he was the perfect member of our team to lead this vital initiative.
Local Focus, National Outlook
As Vancouver makes strides in dealing with a growing shoplifting problem, we are keenly aware of the need for similar action in other Canadian cities like Victoria, Calgary, Edmonton, Regina and Winnipeg. Blackbird Security continues to support our national retail partners such as Sephora, Shoppers Drug Mart, Best Buy and MEC in each of these locations with loss prevention specialists and tactical uniform security guards.
While we provide professional security services in a growing number of markets, we will always remain dedicated to tailoring customized security solutions based on their market and unique needs.