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More police officers top promise from mayoral candidate Bob Bratina in pitch for safer Hamilton

Mayoral Candidate Bob Bratina during a campaign event in August 2022. The former mayor laid out his plan for a better and safer Hamilton on Thursday, September 22, 2022 which includes hiring more police officers. Bob Bratina / Facebook

Bob Bratina says he would push for more police officers, if elected as Hamilton’s next mayor.

Bratina laid out his plan for “a better and safer Hamilton”, during a media event at the top of the escarpment rail trail on Thursday afternoon.

In addition to hiring more police officers, his plan calls for more solar lighting along the city’s multi-use trails, body cameras for Hamilton police officers and more diversity on the local force.

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“Too many Hamiltonians will tell you that they are feeling less safe now than they have in years,” said Bratina. “We’ve seen countless stories of pedestrians being hit by reckless drivers, women being attacked using our trails, an alarming number of shootings across all parts of our city.”

Bratina notes that Hamilton is currently well below the national median average for number of officers per population.

Read more: HamiltoNext seeks to pass on resident’s vision of city to candidates ahead of municipal election

“We’re at 146 per 100,000”, said Bratina. He added that the national median is 156 officers per 100,000 residents.

Bratina added that he’s confident the ranks can be boosted without a residential tax increase in future years.

“The problem budgetarily speaking has been wasting money”, said Bratina. “We need to prioritize what is important to the citizens.”

Hamiltonians will go to the polls on Oct. 24 but can also vote by mail, provided they register to receive a municipal election voting package by Sept. 22.

More than 92 individuals signed on for a voice in council including nine mayoral hopefuls looking to succeed Mayor Fred Eisenberger.

Eighty-three are hoping to represent constituents as councillors.

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