Project LEARN kicks off as students return

a police car with siren flashing. CREDIT: KALI9
On Sept. 2, the London Police Service launched their annual Project LEARN (Liquor Enforcement and Reduction of Noise).

Students can expect to see an increased police presence in college and university neighbourhoods throughout Sept.

On Sept. 2, the London Police Service launched their annual Project LEARN (Liquor Enforcement and Reduction of Noise).

The campaign, first launched in 2007, is a response to community concerns as post-secondary students return to London for school in the fall. The project focuses on nuisance parties, open fires, noise, littering, and public urination in the city. During the month of September, residents will see an increased police presence in the downtown core and in neighbourhoods around Western University and Fanshawe College.

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“In collaboration with our community partners, we are reminding students to celebrate responsibly. We are encouraging the students to be courteous and respectful as members of the London community,” said Staff Sergeant Robert Brown, of the London Police Service Community Policing Section in a statement. “We will be sharing safety messages through our social media channels throughout the next few weeks as reminders to community members and students.”

Members of the LPS Auxiliary Unit will be visiting neighbourhoods around Western University and Fanshawe College to educate and inform students about by-laws and crime prevention tips. Project LEARN focuses primarily on education, as well as enforcement, to ensure students are aware of the law when it comes to partying.

Cst. Scott Mandich said the goal of the project is to develop a positive relationship between students and police.

“We strive to build strong relationships with our community,” said Mandich. “The increased police presence during Project LEARN allows us to build positive relationships with students, helping students know how to have a good time within the confines of public health measures.”

Last year’s campaign resulted in 15 provincial offence notices, one Reopening Ontario Act charge, eight by-law notices, and two arrests under the Liquor Licence Control Act.

“Everyone’s health and safety is the most important thing, so as long as everyone is mindful of that, I think we’ll have a really successful year,” said Mandich.

Project LEARN will be in place until Sept. 24.