Mayor Fred Eisenberger will step down effective November 26. as Chair of the Hamilton Police Services Board as well as his seat on the board. He had earlier made a commitment to not serve an entire term and make way for a new Chair and a new board pick that potentially boosts diversity.
Eisenberger says he originally intended serving two years on the board but the challenges of the pandemic plus the need to recruit and appoint a new Chief and Deputy Chief extended the time frame.
“Although the decision is Council’s to make, my wish would be that the opportunity be taken to increase the inclusivity and diversity of the police services board, and by ‘diversity’ I include increased gender parity,” says Eisenberger. “To my knowledge, Council has not appointed a female to the Police Services Board in the past 30 years if ever.
Eisenberger is giving notice about his intention to leave the board and provide Council with the opportunity to pick a new board representative at its Nov. 24 Council meeting. Eisenberger will attend his last police services board meeting on Nov. 25th.
Eisenberger pointed to several accomplishments during his tenure, including:
• Appointment of the first full-time Two-Spirit and LGBTQIA+ Liaison officer to work with Hamilton’s Two-Spirit and LGBTQIA+ community.
• Appointment of a new diversity and inclusion specialist position. The first of its kind role for the HPS.
• Opening of a new police investigative services building which houses state-of-the-art forensics services.
• Moved and approved the motion to end carding at the HPS.
• The development of the police service’s first business plan.
• Increased engagement and consultation with the public including virtual townhalls. Nearly 15,000 randomly-selected people took part in two townhall meetings in January 2021 during which a polling question posed found more than 85 per cent who said they are either satisfied or very satisfied with the Hamilton Police Service.