Surrey: There is now a new way for parents and guardians to reach out to their local police in Surrey if they have concerns about their children becoming involved in illegal activities.

Residents can now contact the new Surrey RCMP Parent Helpline at 604-599-7800 if they believe their child is involved or at risk of becoming involved in criminal activity. Through this helpline, parents can get in touch with the Surrey RCMP’s specialized youth officers and youth counsellors who will be able to assist them with resources, police information, and intervention services. Parents who call the helpline and leave a message stating their name, phone number, and concern will have their call returned within 24 hours between Monday and Friday. English, Punjabi and French staff will be available.

“Parents have concerns about their kids, especially those who may be heading towards the criminal lifestyle and at risk of being involved in the drug trade,” says Surrey RCMP Officer in Charge Assistant Commissioner Bill Fordy. “This new helpline will provide a central location for parents to obtain information relating to youth and crime and how they can best protect their children from crime.”

Last month, the Surrey RCMP hosted a community safety forum on youth, drugs and violence along with the Surrey School District and CFSEU-BC. At the conclusion of the event, two families approached officers to discuss concerns about their children being involved in drug trafficking. As a result, Surrey RCMP officers are now working with these families to intervene in criminal activities and develop plans to help the youth exit the drug trade. The new Parent Helpline will give all Surrey parents access to police officers and intervention counsellors when they believe their children are involved in the drug trade or at risk of becoming involved.

Surrey RCMP offers a number of preventative and educational youth programs including the Wrap program, Code Blue, and Youth Police Academy as well as intervention programs such as the Youth Intervention and Restorative Justice programs. They also work with many external partners including the Surrey School District and other education, health, and social service providers.

“Surrey is a growing city with a significant youth population, the majority of which are creative, smart and enthusiastic members of our community. Unfortunately our young people are also targets for drug traffickers who exploit youth and lead them on a dangerous path with potentially fatal consequences,” says Assistant Commissioner Fordy. “That is why early intervention efforts by parents, police, schools, and the community are key in preventing young people from being lured into this lifestyle.”

Residents are reminded that the Parent Helpline is not a replacement for calling the non-emergency line (604-599-0502) if they need to report a crime, or 911 for crimes in progress or life-threatening situations.