Keyvan Reissian has always been drawn to serving with the Toronto Police Service since immigrating to Canada in 1990 and two careers later, he’s fulfilled that goal after graduating as a Parking Enforcement officer (PEO) on November 23.
Laid off in 2016 from Sears Canada where he held several information technology positions, Reissian returned to the classroom and worked as a massage therapist.
When he saw a job opening for PEOs, he applied and was successful.
“In this capacity, you get to serve more people and make a difference in the city,” said 52-year-old Reissian, who is the oldest of the 19-member graduating class.
Dosanjh Paramdeep was the top graduate with a 99 per cent average.
“I guess it comes down to a lot of studying and some luck,” said the 2012 University of Toronto computer science graduate. “For the last five years, I have been trying to become a Toronto Police member, so this is a dream come true. I am going to make the most of this opportunity to serve the city.”
Paramdeep aspires to be a police officer.
The average graduating mark of the class was 94 per cent.
Sarah Chaudharry can’t wait to see where the second career will take her.
She has been a drug access navigator at a hospital for the last six years.
“Adhering to the rules of society is not something that is in black and white,” said Chaudharry. “It is the fabric of what keeps us together. It is a big part of my value system and that is why I am attracted to policing. Every single component, including parking enforcement, contributes to that.”
Bill Li has always thought of serving the city.
“It always seemed like a great place to be and I am so honoured to be a member,” he said. “I come from the world of retail where I assisted customers with their needs. That has prepared me for the role I am now in. I got a few parking tickets, but I understood why I got them.”
Becoming a uniformed member is also on Michael Rowe’s radar.
“Working with people and enforcing the law when that is necessary have always appealed to me,” said Rowe, who graduated with a 97.3 per cent mark.
Traffic Operations Supt. Scott Baptist joined Brian Moniz, the A/Officer-in-Charge of Parking Enforcement, in presenting the certificates.
He told the graduates that their new role carries a lot of responsibility.
“This is much different than any other job,” said Baptist. “Everbody knows you are member of Toronto Police and that carries with it much responsibility. When you go out on the road and people come to you for assistance, it is so important that you do everything you could to help them. Always think about what a good member of this organization does. We are all about public service. You are in an enforcement capacity and that is part of the public service that we deliver.”
The recruits were in training for six weeks covering many subjects, including writing handwritten and electronic hand-held tickets, towing, private property, fire routes, accessible parking, considerations and by-laws.
The new officers will spend the next five weeks with a coach officer on the road.
Pamela Carswell, Glen Germain, Keith Chipman and Lori Young conducted the training.
“This is so much different that when I joined in 1996,” said Young, who has been a training officer for the past 25 years. “I had four days of training before going on the road. Now, they spend five days a week with us and they also receive training in crisis situations, defensive tactics, tactical communication, powers of arrest, occupational health & safety and ethics training at the police college.”
A total of 13 of the graduating class is assigned to the city’s east end, five will work with Parking Enforcement West and one is going to the central division.
This is the third graduating class this year
“Overall, we have turned out 44 graduates in 2018 and another class starts in three weeks,” added Young. “There is a job call on the Toronto Police website and we conduct information sessions that interested individuals can sign up for.”
Visit tps.on.ca/careers for more information on roles within the Toronto Police Service