BC Government: Recognizing leaders in community safety, crime prevention
VICTORIA – Five community leaders and one community organization have received awards for their ongoing support for victims of crime, including those impacted by gender-based violence.
The 23rd annual Community Safety and Crime Prevention Awards were held by a virtual ceremony.
“These award recipients and nominees demonstrate that we can make a real difference in the lives of those who have been impacted by crime, violence and victimization,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “On behalf of the government, I want to thank each recipient for their dedication and commitment in keeping our communities safe and helping survivors of crime.”
The awards acknowledge individuals, non-profit organizations, police and other local partners for their work in advancing crime prevention, restorative justice and other approaches that keep our communities safer. These efforts support provincial initiatives in policing, community safety and victim services.
“Each of the award recipients has shown an outstanding commitment to community, to care and to make our communities safer,” said Grace Lore, Parliamentary Secretary for Gender Equity. “Their work has made a difference in the lives of British Columbians impacted by crimes, including survivors of sexual assault and abuse. I want to express my sincere gratitude for their efforts, for their trauma-informed and community-centred work and for all they have done to change lives in our province.”
The Community Safety and Crime Prevention Awards were presented to:
- Lianne Ritch, Vancouver
- Dede Dacyk, Penticton
- Victoria Sexual Assault Centre, Victoria
- Gurinder Mann, Surrey
- Sandra Bryce, Victoria
- Baljinder Kandola, Richmond
Provincial information on community safety and crime prevention:
A backgrounder with the award recipients’ biographies follows.
Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General
Community Safety and Crime Prevention Awards recipients’ biographies
Lianne Ritch, Vancouver
Winner of the Award of Distinction for over 25 years of work, Ritch has played key roles in shaping and expanding all aspects of the BC Women’s Hospital Sexual Assault Service in Vancouver. As the Vancouver nurse co-ordinator, she is responsible for the clinical and nursing components of the program. Ritch provides direct care to survivors as well as providing education to health-care providers, academic institutions, police, victim services and public health-care agencies, teaching trauma-informed care and ensuring best practices for caring for survivors of sexualized violence. Her notable work includes consulting with the Canadian International Development Agency in South Africa to establish a specialized sexual assault service and creating the B.C. provincial forensic evidence storage policy and provincial protocol, which gives survivors access to their non-forensic drug and alcohol screening results.
Dede Dacyk, Penticton
One of two winners of the Services to Victims Award, Dacyk began as a volunteer for the Penticton/Summerland RCMP Victim/Witness Service Unit 17 years ago, where she is now the program manager. Known for her relationship building and commitment, Dacyk has a “client first” attitude, providing a level of service to her clients that make each and every one of them feel like a priority. In 2016, Dacyk took the lead to acquire Calypso, a Pacific Assistance Dog Society dog. Calypso has been instrumental in not only providing supports for victims and survivors, but also for RCMP members and support staff.
Victoria Sexual Assault Centre (VSAC), Victoria
A winner of the Services to Victims Award, VSAC is a feminist organization committed to ending sexualized violence through healing, education and prevention. Formed in 1982, VSAC has been a champion within the field, dedicated to supporting women and all trans survivors of sexual assault and childhood sexual abuse, through advocacy, counselling and empowerment. VSAC offers a collaborative model of care, including a sexual assault response team and the first and only integrated clinic of its kind available 24 hours a day, involving co-ordination of many partners to provide safe, culturally appropriate, confidential care. Other notable programs include its award-winning gender-based violence prevention program, Project Respect, and the newly formed Indigenous Community Response Network, kʷənéŋətəl iʔ iʔsaʔə (Lekwungen phrase meaning “Helping one another and getting better”).
Gurinder Mann, Surrey
Winner of the Restorative Justice Memorial Award, Mann has been involved in the restorative justice community since he was a teenager. Beginning as a volunteer as a facilitator at Communities Embracing Restorative Action (CERA) Society, Mann became a board member and worked his way up to executive director in 2010, a position he still holds. His passion, leadership and dedication to justice have earned CERA considerable accomplishments during his tenure. Mann is known for being a remarkable leader, educator, reformer, advocate and active volunteer. His knowledge and skills in a vast range of areas have enabled him to make an outstanding contribution to restorative justice, crime prevention and public safety.
Sandra Bryce, Victoria
Winner of the Crime Prevention and Community Safety Award for her lifetime dedication in the sector, Bryce has demonstrated unwavering commitment to get justice for the abused and to help children heal. For the past 13 years, Bryce has been the executive director of the Victoria Child Abuse Prevention and Counselling Centre, where she champions the voice of abused children and youth. Bryce is responsible for the centre’s development programs, including the Victim Assistance Program, Sexual Abuse Intervention Program and Victoria’s Child and Youth Advocacy Centre. Most notably, in her role as Yukon’s director of community and correctional services, Bryce was a key member in establishing the Domestic Violence Treatment Option Court, which was awarded the Order of Canada for its innovation and success.
Baljinder Kandola, Richmond
Winner of the Youth Leadership Award, Cst. Kandola found her passion in crime prevention and community policing early in her 19-year policing career. As co-ordinator of the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program for the RCMP within Richmond schools, she has been instrumental in providing youth the tools they need to make healthy choices, including resistance strategies on how to deal with peer pressure and stress in a positive way. Since joining the DARE Society’s board of directors in 2016, Kandola has expanded her passion for education beyond schools, developing and implementing DARE initiatives and events within the community.
Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General