New Westminster will soon have 12 new reserve constables.
The police department is hosting a graduation ceremony on Thursday evening at City Hall to celebrate the 12 reserve constables, the first in the city since the program was phased out in 2000.
Under the former program, the reserve constables were armed and their primary function was to supplement operational policing under the supervision of full-time police officers.
The new provincially regulated reserve constable program - which is what the 12 graduates completed - is designed for community volunteers, who will not be armed, and whose primary role is to participate in community policing activities related to public safety and crime prevention.
The 12 reserve constable graduates will be tasked with community-focused duties that will provide both the police department and the community with the opportunity to coordinate, facilitate and implement community policing and crime prevention programs in areas that may not have the necessary community infrastructure.
The ceremony at City Hall is between 6 and 7 p.m. and members of the public are invited to attend.