Monday, February 4, 2008

PC Gord Hayford Retires

The smiling photo of PC Gord Hayford and Community Police Liaison Committee Chair Marilyn Hodge, was taken at last years 43 Division open house.

Gord has put a human face on policing in West Hill as the Crime Prevention Officer and expert in the way Environmental design affects public safety.

Gord announced his retirement from policing today:

A heartfelt THANK YOU

Greetings to all.

Many of you may have wondered over the past several months, what happened to me?

Well I’m still here. But only for today. I apologize for the lack of information but it was due to office politics. Nuff said.

I want you to know though that 43 Division has some of the most caring, competent, compassionate and professional hard working Police Officers I have ever had the pleasure to work with. And to her benefit. The second in command, Inspector Bernadette Button is one of the most intelligent and caring woman I know. A totally competent officer and leader. A real spark in the management of 43 Division.

I would encourage everyone to become more and more involved in your communities. Know that you can make a difference and you can make things change. A community in which people take an interest is a community that crime can not grab a hold of.
Get out on the street. Use your parks, use your recreation facilities. You have the ability to make the space you call your home better and safer. The police can not do this as much as you.

Several years ago, ( now I’m dating myself) a milk store called Beckers started a campaign with buttons which simply stated “our cops are tops”. Well Beckers is long gone and you could probably get a few bucks for those buttons on Ebay. But how about this. When you see a cop drive by, why not wave to him or her. If you see them on the street or in a plaza. Say hello. (No don’t buy them a coffee and donut. They get enough.)

You have no idea how far that goes to making the officer feel accepted and part of the community themselves. An officer who feels that way is more apt to take a more personal interest in the area they patrol. That simple gesture can be a crime fighting tool by it self.

Kind of one of those win win situations. It really doesn’t take much to make a community safer.

At any rate I have decided to retire and today was my last day on the job.
Tomorrow I will be just another citizen. My wife and I have moved up north to a new home on Lake Scugog and I have a water front property. I plan to catch up on some much needed fishing come the nice weather. ( If it ever comes)

I would like to extend my thanks to everyone in the community who have honoured me by allowing me to work alongside them. In the past 33 years I have seen many changes in South East Scarborough. Most for the better. Some of them I have had a part in changing. Most have been changed by you, the community. Your community is one of the most thriving in the city.
I have had the pleasure of working with some fine politicians, Ron Moser, Gay Cow born, David Soknaki, Maryann Chambers and Paul Ainsly just to mention a few.

I extend a special thanks to Lori Metcalfe who is the most dedicated community advocate I know. Also to the staff of CPAT, The Crime Prevention Association of Toronto and Lesley Chitra for their trust, support and dedication to me and the community. I don’t want to forget Marilyn Hodge, Co-Chair of the 43 Division CPLC ( Community Police liaison Committee) and the committee itself for their support.
To my replacement, Const Bill Campbell, the new Crime Prevention Officer, I wish great success. Bill is a very dedicated and caring officer who I know will go that extra distance for the community. A special thanks to Inspector Button for her support over the last few months. Thanks to Deputy Cheif Tony Warr. A great boss, great leader and a real gentleman. I also want to thank you, the community, for allowing me the opportunity to serve you.

On January 24th I was honoured with a retirement dinner / roast in which the Deputy Chief of Police attended along with other high ranking Police officers both active and retired. Members of the community were there, politicians, Auxiliary Police Officers, friends and family. I am fortunate to be able to live vicariously through two of my children who are both police officers at 52 and 54 Divisions.

No one could have asked for a better job or to work with better people than I had the privilege of over the past several years

So again I would like to say both a very heartfelt thanks and goodbye. 33 years working in the streets of Toronto with incredible people. What a ride.

Mark me 10-7

PC Gord Hayford
4496 (retired)

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