UPDATE: This story has been updated to include comment from North Battleford Mayor Ryan Bater.
A Maclean’s study has found that North Battleford is the most dangerous city in Canada.
The study used information for the 2016 Crime Severity Index. The statistics measured violent crime, theft, fraud, drug trafficking and impaired driving.
North Battleford was ranked highest in firearm offenses, breaking and entering and impaired driving.
Lloydminster was also on the list, ranking as number 14.
Lloydminster ranked at number five for impaired driving, and number nine for breaking and entering.
North Battleford Mayor Ryan Bater says he takes exception to the use of the word “dangerous.”
“We’ve ranked high on the Crime Severity Index for several years. In fact we’ve been on the top of it since 2009 when Statistics Canada starting releasing this information, but i’m not sure that the level of crime that we have in North Battleford would characterize us as the most dangerous city. We definitely have challenges, I would suggest that all of Northwest Saskatchewan has challenges with crime and safety.”
He adds ” We have a high proportion of people living high risk lifestyles and they gravitate to the urban centres and sometimes their high risk lifestyles lead to violence or criminal acts or encounters with the RCMP.”
Mayor Ryan Bater says the city has made safety a priority through policing initiatives and public interaction campaigns.
He also called on the provincial and federal government to help address issues in the municipality that could create a support network and reduce crime.
“We need appropriate investments in youth to make sure that the children aren’t growing up in environments that lead to these high risk lifestyles. We need investments in mental health care, especially front line mental health care. We know that in our city, the mental health ward at our hospital has a very long wait list. So we know that people who need attention immediately aren’t getting it. We also need appropriate investments in housing, especially emergency housing.”
The Goat has reached out to the City of Lloydminster, and the RCMP in both cities. We are waiting for comment.
The full study can be found on Macleans’ website.