Looking for a career change after being successfully self-employed, Constable Wilson Chong chose policing.
Nine years later, he has no regrets and is encouraging community members to consider the Toronto Police Service as a viable option.
“To be honest, policing was not something that was on my radar growing up,” said Chong, who moved to the city from Vancouver in 1990. “I had never done much community service and when I was thinking of a field in which I could give back and make a difference after accomplishing some things in business, I asked myself, ‘Why not policing’?”
Starting at 43 Division where he spent seven years, Chong was at 52 Division for two years before being assigned two weeks ago to the Talent Acquisition Team at police headquarters.
The Service is in the process of hiring uniformed officers.
“Candidates are required to go through a two-stage interview process and if successful, there will be background checks on them,” said Chong. “If everything comes back clean, they will undergo a psychological evaluation and fill out a questionnaire before an employment offer is made to them.”
The Service is holding a recruitment drive on Saturday, October 27, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Agincourt Collegiate Institute, located at 2621 Midland Avenue.
Anyone interested in the joining the Toronto Police Service, in a Courts, Parking, Communications or Policing role is encouraged to drop in.
For more information on civilian or uniform careers, visit tps.on.ca/careers
Chief Mark Saunders said the Service is looking for the best and brightest who are interested in interacting with the community and solving community safety problems.
“If you are joining because you want to jump fences and do pursuits, you are going to have a hard time understanding policing,” he said. “When we spoke of our modernization plan, what resonated more than anything else was the importance of community-centric policing. The community wants to work with the police in problem solving. So when you add those two lenses, you see what we are looking for is a lot different than what we were looking for 35 years ago.”
TPS is Canada’s largest and most diverse police organization with members speaking 70 different languages.
“When we talk about Canada as a whole, the number one source of growth is immigration,” Saunders said. “We are rapidly changing. If we are going to serve our community as a whole and if we are going to get it right, then there is no segment of our community to be left out.”
Deputy Chief Barbara McLean, who is in charge of the Human Resources Command, said one of her greatest moments was joining the Service 29 years ago and seeing the pride on her parents’ faces.
“In the time I have been here, I have had many opportunities to make them proud,” she said.