"Calgary Transit plans to double number of transit ambassadors."

Critics pleased with decision that avoids using peace officers, security guards

Christine Laing, a board member with the Calgary Alliance for the Common Good, said her group is pleased to see Calgary Transit staffing the CTrains with helpers who are not peace officers or security guards.

“This is an excellent start,” said Laing. “It gives you good information about what the needs of the people using transit really are. And you can deploy it in a variety of ways to improve services across the board.”

Laing said security guards and peace officers have compliance and enforcement as the central part of their job, and that changes the relationship between the transit user and the officer they’re speaking with. She said it’s better if people can interact with someone who is not in uniform and is there to assist and help.

Laing had previously raised concerns about an added police presence on CTrains last spring as a way of dealing with increased social disorder on the system.