Hamilton Police Have Implemented the Verified Alarm Response Program (VARP)

According to the Hamilton Police Services, the Hamilton Police are implementing the VARP Program as of September 1, 2019 – putting the responsibility of confirming an alarm condition prior to Police response to an alarm condition on the owner of the premise and/or their monitoring company.

We recently posted on the VARP system itself and you can see all of that on this link here on Verified False Alarm Response Program.

Beginning on Sunday, September 1, 2019, Hamilton Police will be joining other Ontario police services in requiring alarm companies to verify any signals they receive before notifying police.

The practice, called verified response, significantly reduces the number of alarms requiring police attendance and allows Hamilton Police to effectively deploy officers to other calls for service.

In 2018, Hamilton Police Service responded to over 3000 alarms and 95 per cent were deemed to be false. False alarms, despite their chronically low validity rate, are treated as crimes in progress and prompt a high priority police response.

Effective September 1, this means that in order to dispatch police, alarm companies will have to verify that a criminal offence has/is occurring or there is an imminent threat to personal safety through:

• Audio or video signals

• Witness (owner, keyholder, guards, etc.) on scene

• Multiple alarm activation points in a manner or sequence which indicates suspected criminal activity

Hamilton Police Service will not dispatch officers to the alarm call unless one of the four verification methods is met. However, situations such as duress, panic or hold-up style alarms will NOT require verification.

These processes will not only aid police with effectively deploying resources but also ensure home and business owners will not incur fees that are unwarranted.

To read the full article as posted on the Hamilton Police Website – see their post on Hamilton Police Will No Longer Respond to Burglar Alarms Without Proof of Criminal Activity.

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