From civilians with no police experience to detective sergeants fighting corruption
These investigator-sergeants are part of the first cohort of civilians recruited and officially trained as police officers tasked with fighting corruption in Quebec.
Alexei Doros, Jocelyne David and Daniel Pilon were recruited by the Permanent Anti-Corruption Unit (UPAC) because of their specific skills in fighting corruption in Quebec.
The three new investigation sergeants went through a rigorous hiring process, after which only 12 people were chosen from more than 300 applications.
I am an accountant by training… CPA, emphasizes Jocelyne David, who smiles as she thinks of the status of sergeant-investigator that she now officially possesses.
Indeed, the woman 57 years old became a police officer, within the meaning of the Police Act in Quebec, last December. In addition to her briefcase, she now wears a service weapon and UPAC badge on her belt when she enters work.
Previously, I was an investigator at the Autorité des marchés financiers for several years. I had to work with tripartite teams of police services. So I had experience in the field to investigate. Joining UPAC is therefore a logical follow-up to my career, she notes, filled with pride at the idea of being part of a police organization.
Jocelyne David discusses a criminal investigation file with her colleagues at UPAC. To his right, Daniel Pilon, and to his left, Alexei Dotros.
Daniel Pilon, first a financial adviser, then a securities investigator, also decided to launch in the adventure, at 58, after being chosen by UPAC.
His solid experience played in his favor during the call for applications.
“My work remains the same. My skills remain the same. But what changes in my job is having to make arrests and interrogations. »
— Daniel Pilon, former financial adviser turned police officer at UPAC
As for Alexei Doros, one of the youngest sergeant-investigators recruited in the first cohort, he says he heard the call of duty.
I am from Eastern Europe, Moldova. I immigrated with my parents when I was younger, when I was 4 years old. In Eastern Europe, corruption, unfortunately, is quite present. I wanted to make sure that in our community, here in Canada, the fight against corruption was done, he says.
I had completed my police technique in Cégep, but I was more interested in the investigation and criminal intelligence component, rather than the gendarmerie and the patrol. So I left the police for a few years to work, among other things, as a money laundering investigator at the Montreal Casino, adds Alexei Doros, who wants to start and end his career at UPAC.
The three investigator-sergeants are therefore recruits, freshly graduated from the National Police School of Quebec (ENPQ) last December. They are from the first cohort of the new Investigative Preparatory Training Program.
The first cohort of the Investigation Readiness Training Program last December allowed 12 civilians to officially become police officers and obtain the status of sergeant- investigator at UPAC.
Hired by UPAC, they received a full-time salary to go and study for nine weeks at Ahuntsic College, then followed six other weeks of compulsory training at ENPQ. Their new employer also assumed all tuition fees for both institutions.
UPAC wants to ensure that the career change from a professional to the police is done at zero cost.
Thanks to a change in the Police Act, people of all ages, with no police experience, can now join UPAC as actual police officers, if they have proven combat skills. against corruption.
The 600-hour training therefore excludes the entire aspect of physical intervention and gendarmerie, since these investigators will never have to patrol the field . Everything is focused on criminal investigation training.
I don't want to take credit for this recruiting project. But I have been campaigning for years to review the traditional model of police training, which has not changed for more than 30 years, explains the commissioner for the fight against corruption, Frédérick Gaudreau, who advocates flexibility to overcome the shortage of police officers in Quebec.
For two years, the Police Act has allowed UPAC to hire its own investigators. Commissioner Gaudreau wants to prioritize his own police personnel and move away from loans of service by police organizations, particularly the Sûreté du Québec (SQ).
In the medium term, UPAC is aiming for a ratio of 60-40% between loans of police service and civilians trained to become investigators.
The needs are the same, both at UPAC and elsewhere in police organizations, to recruit qualified and specialized personnel. And, in our case, it is even more complex to recruit people who can diversify our investigative skills, adds the big boss of UPAC.
“What I want is for this template to be available to other police departments, so that #x27;they can get this type of person for a specialized investigation. I think we need it in Quebec. »
— Frédérick Gaudreau, commissioner at UPAC
UPAC commissioner Frédérick Gaudreau has campaigned, since he took office, for the establishment of training allowing people to become police officers and investigators recognized by law within a police organization.
UPAC plans to recruit a second wave of civilians to train them as investigator sergeants and make them begin college training as soon as the school year begins, next September. The call for applications has already been published.
Those wishing to be part of the second cohort of sergeant-investigators can apply until March 26 at the UPAC website. In addition to pension and group insurance plans, the organization offers a salary ranging from $55,500 to $111,000.