POLL OF HIGH RIVER RESIDENTS SHOWS A DISMAL LACK OF TRUST IN RCMP

A large percentage of the residents of High River, Alberta would refuse another evacuation order.

A telephone poll conducted in High River, Alberta this week by Canada’s National Firearms Association has shown that fifty-three percent of decided residents who responded to the poll would refuse orders to evacuate their homes in the event of another flood. “This means that thousands of people in High River are prepared to risk injury and death and charges under the Emergency Management Act rather than leave their homes and property in the care of the RCMP,” said NFA President Sheldon Clare. “This has life and death consequences in the event of another flood like High River experienced last summer and will probably have a spillover effect in other communities in Canada if and when a State of Local Emergency is declared.”

The telephone poll was conducted during the evenings of August 5 and 6 and asked the following question: “Knowing what you know today, if High River had another flood would you obey an evacuation order?” A total of 2,296 total phone connections were made with 444 persons completing the poll, and of those, 39% answered Yes, 44% answered No and 17% were Undecided.. If we consider the poll results for just those residents who had made up their minds, 53% would refuse to evacuate their homes if a state of emergency was declared. The complete phone survey results are attached. Compare this 53% refusal rate with the 2.3% of High River residents who actually refused to evacuate during last June’s flood. The RCMP have admitted they conducted unwarranted searches of 4,666 High River homes last June and July and found just 303 out of a total of about 13,000 residents who refused to leave their homes. “Obviously, the heavy-handed actions of the RCMP in High River during last year’s flood have destroyed a lot of trust,” said Clare. “It’s going to take a lot more than lame excuses that the RCMP have fed people so far to rebuild this trust. That’s why the NFA has been calling for a judicial enquiry to get to bottom of this mess.”

Polling expert Gary Mauser, Professor Emeritus with Simon Fraser University had this to say about the telephone poll. “Results from a small but professional survey like this are trustworthy but tentative. The sample was drawn using state-of-the-art random-dialling methodology and included all valid telephone numbers of current High River residents. The margin of error for random samples of this size is approximately ± 5 percentage points at a 95% confidence level. Research always raises more questions than answers. This is particularly true when investigating sensitive questions using small samples. It is important that these findings be verified by a larger survey sponsored by the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP that would be able to probe more deeply into the opinions of High River residents.”

Whether the residents of High River will change their minds when the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP releases their report in September remains to be seen. We leave you with these words by High River Mayor Craig Snodgrass when he spoke on News Talk 770 Radio on June 17, 2014, “When this report comes out and it’s not the RCMP doing it – the independent report – as long as it’s honest and there’s lessons learned in there because my biggest worry is, if there isn’t the lessons learned in there, if something like this happened again somewhere, anywhere in Canada, how would you do things differently. If we don’t have that lessons learned, I’m very worried that if there’s an evacuation order put anywhere and certain people locked down because of a loss of trust in any of that stuff, that it could possibly get somebody killed, right. So we got to be very honest about this stuff.”

Canada’s National Firearms Association is this country’s largest and most effective advocacy organization representing the interests of firearms owners and users.

High River Poll.pdf

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For more information contact:

Blair Hagen, Executive VP Communications, 604-753-8682 Contact Us
Sheldon Clare, President, 250-981-1841 Contact Us
Shawn Bevins, Executive VP, 819-313-2887 Contact Us
Canada’s NFA toll-free number – 1-877-818-0393
NFA Website: www.nfa.ca