Victim Services sees surge of requests for GPS device, gets funding to expand successful program

By Mike Renzella

The Haldimand Press

HALDIMAND—Non-profit agency Victim Services of Haldimand, Norfolk, and Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation has received funding from the Haldimand Police Services Board to expand a program that puts a useful tool in the hands of potential victims of crime.

That tool is known as a Mobile Emergency Response System (MERS). It is a GPS enhanced device that, when pushed, can immediately provide the police with the exact location of its user. It is an effective tool for individuals who have been identified as being at a medium to high risk of facing violence.

“Since the COVID pandemic, we have had a surge in requests for our MERS,” said Charlene A. Gains-Lovegrove, Corporate Manager for Victim Services. “This technology allows the users and their families to stay in their communities where they have established support systems. This program is funded only through the generosity of the community and every dollar goes directly to the cost of the units and the monitoring.”

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