Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

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Zybero
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Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Zybero » Thu Mar 01, 2012 7:35 am

I had a question that's been bugging me lately. I phoned the Ministry's support line and they couldn't really provide me with a clear answer so I was hoping someone here could possibly shed some light on it.

So I am a licensed security guard under the PSISA in Ontario, after the change to the new act I am prohibited from referring to myself as an "officer" whilst on duty/in uniform so as not to confuse myself with a police officer (how that is even possible with all the giant SECURITY patches is beyond me, but some people don't know any better). This seems entirely reasonable to me and I have no issue with not being allowed to use the word when referring to myself, I'm not an officer after all.

However, I am ALSO a PPO (private property officer) with Ottawa Bylaw Services. Now if I were issuing tickets outside uniform this wouldn't be an issue at all but when I issue parking infraction notices I am always in uniform. Now under PSISA I can't refer to myself as an officer, but my official title with the city is a "private property officer". Well I certainly don't ever have to call myself a private property officer and instead may call myself a security guard since I am in uniform I don't see it being an issue while issuing infractions.

Here's the really confusing part (for me at least) though, I have never been to court so I can't really say whether this comes up or not, but I am also required to be in full security uniform while attending court for my parking infraction notices (company policy). If the JP or someone asks me what my title is in court, while I'm under oath, what do I say? (again, haven't been to court, don't know if this would even be a question I'm asked)

I'm not sure if this will be clear enough or will confuse people but I was really just wondering if anyone was able to help clarify this.

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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Smokeman » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:09 am

You correctly identified that the term "Officer" is prohibited under the PSISA. When you are acting as a municipal law enforcement officer, even for the purpose of writing a parking ticket, you are no longer a "SECURITY GUARD" and for that 1-5 minutes (or however long you issue the ticket, etc) you become a peace officer for the purpose of enforcing the municipal by-law (PSA, s.15(2)); and peace officers are exempt from the PSISA pursuant to s.2(7)(c).

Please keep in mind this only applies when you are actually enforcing the (parking?) by-law. As soon as you are done, you resume your position as a security guard.
Last edited by Smokeman on Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Sk82 » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:27 am

I would just say your job title. I'm not a police officer but am a special constable. I have police powers under certain acts but always Identify myself as a S/Cst. In court when they ask for my job title I say special constable. Often times the judge or crown prosecutor end up refering to me as a police officer during court. I think they do that for the sake of confusion since often times the public doesn't know the difference between a S/Cst and a regular Cst. Or possibly they rarely have S/Cst's in court and do it out of habit.

IMO The whole purpose of that act is to prevent security guards from going around refering to themselves as "officers" when dealing with the public. Not for when your in court for a ticket you have issued. If your in court for a charge you have laid, you work for a city bylaw agency, your obviously some kind of officer. Maybe say bylaw personnel, bylaw enforcement personnel, private property security guard if your worried. Try asking the crown prosecutor before your next court and see what they have do for others in your situation.
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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Smokeman » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:42 am

If you are a witness testifying in (parking) court, you are definately not acting as a security guard and you can call yourself a "private property officer" or "municipal law enforcement officer". There is nothing wrong with saying "I am a security guard employed by X and also a municipal law enforcement officer appointed under Ottawa's parking bylaws,etc". In fact if you don't say you are an appointed officer to write tickets then the witness has not been properly qualified.

My previous answer speaks only to the legality of your question.

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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby devilwoman » Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:53 pm

There is nothing wrong with saying "I am a security guard employed by X and also a municipal law enforcement officer appointed under Ottawa's parking bylaws,etc".


That's how I used to do it. Never any issues as its a legit title and you're not holding yourself out to be something you are not.
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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Whistler » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:49 pm

You are a deputized parking control officer for the purposes of writing the tickets and defending them in court. So yes, I imagine if a JP asks you can say that... you would be an officer while enforcing the bylaw which you are appointed under, so basically while writing tickets, patrolling for that purpose, and in court I imagine. It probably would also come into play if you were assaulted during those duties but I'd ask a crown or cop about that for a better answer.

Outside of those duties I wouldn't use the title.

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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby alexander » Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:31 pm

devilwoman wrote:
There is nothing wrong with saying "I am a security guard employed by X and also a municipal law enforcement officer appointed under Ottawa's parking bylaws,etc".


That's how I used to do it. Never any issues as its a legit title and you're not holding yourself out to be something you are not.



You can have 10 different titles. It's only a legitimate title WHEN you are acting under it. Not at ALL times. See Smokemans comments. :)

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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Mongo » Thu Mar 08, 2012 10:08 pm

Zybero wrote:I had a question that's been bugging me lately. I phoned the Ministry's support line and they couldn't really provide me with a clear answer so I was hoping someone here could possibly shed some light on it.

So I am a licensed security guard under the PSISA in Ontario, after the change to the new act I am prohibited from referring to myself as an "officer" whilst on duty/in uniform so as not to confuse myself with a police officer (how that is even possible with all the giant SECURITY patches is beyond me, but some people don't know any better). This seems entirely reasonable to me and I have no issue with not being allowed to use the word when referring to myself, I'm not an officer after all.

However, I am ALSO a PPO (private property officer) with Ottawa Bylaw Services. Now if I were issuing tickets outside uniform this wouldn't be an issue at all but when I issue parking infraction notices I am always in uniform. Now under PSISA I can't refer to myself as an officer, but my official title with the city is a "private property officer". Well I certainly don't ever have to call myself a private property officer and instead may call myself a security guard since I am in uniform I don't see it being an issue while issuing infractions.

Here's the really confusing part (for me at least) though, I have never been to court so I can't really say whether this comes up or not, but I am also required to be in full security uniform while attending court for my parking infraction notices (company policy). If the JP or someone asks me what my title is in court, while I'm under oath, what do I say? (again, haven't been to court, don't know if this would even be a question I'm asked)

I'm not sure if this will be clear enough or will confuse people but I was really just wondering if anyone was able to help clarify this.

I should start by admitting I am NOT a Security Guard, however I am authorized to exercise certain security guard powers under specific statutes. Be very careful not to mis-label yourself in court. Only a true security guard has earned the right to refer to themselves specifically as such, especially under oath in a court of law.
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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Dave Jenkins » Thu Mar 08, 2012 10:35 pm

Mongo wrote:I should start by admitting I am NOT a Security Guard, however I am authorized to exercise certain security guard powers under specific statutes. Be very careful not to mis-label yourself in court. Only a true security guard has earned the right to refer to themselves specifically as such, especially under oath in a court of law.


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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby John014 » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:20 am

To the OP:

Ask your boss.
If you choose Law Enforcement you LOSE the right to be unfit.

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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby John014 » Fri Mar 09, 2012 11:21 pm

Was the comment about someone sometimes having "police" powers edited?

I was trying to come back to that one to make fun of the individual's comments, however I don't seem able to find it anymore.
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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby Sk82 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 8:50 am

John014 wrote:Was the comment about someone sometimes having "police" powers edited?

I was trying to come back to that one to make fun of the individual's comments, however I don't seem able to find it anymore.


My post was the only one I have seen in this thread talking about "Police" powers that I have seen. Are you talking about me?
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Re: Ottawa Bylaw / PSISA Question

Postby John014 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 9:35 am

Soon2BRCMP wrote:
John014 wrote:Was the comment about someone sometimes having "police" powers edited?

I was trying to come back to that one to make fun of the individual's comments, however I don't seem able to find it anymore.


My post was the only one I have seen in this thread talking about "Police" powers that I have seen. Are you talking about me?


Probably.

I had something nice and witty :twisted: to say when I first read it, sadly I have forgotten.
If you choose Law Enforcement you LOSE the right to be unfit.

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