By Darren Lum
Published April 18 2017
Haliburton Highlands OPP Const. Tim Negus was awarded an Outstanding Police Officer Service Award on Monday April 10 at the Fleming College’s Sutherland campus in Peterborough.
Started three years ago the award was established by the students and faculty of the police foundations program at the college in the aftermath of the deaths of three Moncton RCMP officers killed in the line of duty.
There was dismay about negative comments on social media about police. The award is rooted in countering the negativity and recognizing the contributions of local police officers.
Fourth-year police foundations student Ashley Mann presented the award and spoke about Negus.
“Const. Negus has focused his career on building partnerships and relationships. He supports and educates [through] youth programs like Push for Change which builds relationships through hockey between the police and the youth. Const. Negus has also guided and welcomed the Syrian refugee family to the Haliburton area. Tim’s peers also state he represents the OPP with professionalism and a commitment to the community that goes beyond work hours and outside policing duties” she said.
She continued quoting detachment commander and Staff Sgt. Richard Riopelle who nominated Negus saying “His compassion and caring goes above and beyond.”
“I’m sure I speak for everyone here when I say I hope that one day I have the opportunity to wear a badge and serve my community the way that you have represented people of the Haliburton Highlands detachment” she said.
Negus appreciated the recognition and said this was the first award he has won since he served with Toronto Police Services from 1996 to 2001.
“I am very grateful and humbled by the award. The Push for Change is about raising awareness to youth poverty homelessness and mental health and wellbeing. A comparison can also be made to adults or children and the Syrian family …. Completely different situations facing very similar struggles equally deserving our attention” he wrote in an email.
Negus said when he first made contact with the Wiso family it was to provide “a friendly face in uniform.”
Subsequently he has visited with them and makes sure to visit with the boys while at J. Douglas Hodgson Elementary School for OPP Kids program and the youngest who is attending Stuart Baker Elementary School. He frequently sees the Wiso parents in downtown Haliburton. Whether he is in uniform or not he makes sure to “to make them feel welcome and cared about.”
He was one of seven officers from six local police services recognized by the college. According to a press release by the college the nominees must have demonstrated one or several qualities consistent with superior policing and service to their community including professionalism and integrity commitment to community leadership valour sacrifice and determination in the face of adversity.
Negus attributed his achievements to not just his own actions but to the entire community he serves.
“The award would not have been possible without the support I received from students teachers and school staff media and all the community partners who assisted from the beginning. I am very grateful” he said. “The award has an additional meaning for me as it will serve to remind me of the incredible community spirit that lives and breathes in Haliburton County.”