He wouldn’t have cho­sen any­where else

The Aurora (Labrador City) - - FRONT PAGE -

He said new RNC Chief Joe Boland has also been a huge ad­vo­cate and has been push­ing as well for the force to get where it is to­day.

Look­ing Back

Ennis had a long ca­reer with the RNC, work­ing many cases the pub­lic would be fa­mil­iar with. To him though, one that stands out the most is Mount Cashel.

“Early in my ca­reer I was one of the four of­fi­cers who was as­signed to Mount Cashel. I think that process, just be­ing part of that in­ves­ti­ga­tion, gave you an in­sight into the com­mu­nity at the time,” he said.

Ennis said he knew it was go­ing to be im­por­tant when he worked it and was lucky to be in­volved in it. At the time, his par­ents, staunch Catholics both, were still alive and were among those who could barely be­lieve it hap­pened. Ennis him­self was taught by Chris­tian brothers in Grand Falls-Wind­sor.

“It had huge im­pli­ca­tions into how we as a com­mu­nity, as a Cana­dian so­ci­ety, deal with child abuse and deal with the laws to pro­tect kids now. That whole in­ves­ti­ga­tion has im­pli­ca­tions into how we pro­tect each other. It may seem like an ex­ag­ger­a­tion, but what we learned as a com­mu­nity and as a prov­ince from that in­ves­ti­ga­tion, it im­pacted Child Youth and Fam­ily Ser­vices, it im­pacted crim­i­nal law, it changed things as a re­sult of what hap­pened,” Ennis said.

He said it forced New­found­land and Labrador to look in­ward, to look at our­selves and re­ally see who we were.

“Chris­tian brothers were held in such high es­teem at that point and peo­ple re­al­ized at that point that it could hap­pen there. It made us all re­al­ize that it could hap­pen ev­ery­where,” he said.

Ennis said the big­gest thing that came out of it was we all learned how to teach your kids how to pro­tect them­selves and al­lowed us to build safety mech­a­nisms.

“I think we’re a bet­ter com­mu­nity now. I think were bet­ter at pro­tect­ing kids right now than we were,” he said.

An­other part of his ca­reer that stands out for him was his role in the cre­ation of the Am­ber Alert sys­tem in Canada.

He said he hap­pened to be at the right place the right time when the in­spec­tor was go­ing down the hall­way look­ing for some­one to vol­un­teer on a com­mit­tee and he stuck up his hand.

“Get­ting that where it is now, with a fair bit of work, but it is some­thing that I can look back on in my life and see that it made a dif­fer­ence. Every­one in Canada now knows what an Am­ber Alert is. When you hear Am­ber Alert you know what that means. To take that pro­gram from its in­fancy and take it to where it is right now, I was glad and lucky enough to be a par­tic­i­pant in the process.”

Look­ing back on his 35 years, more than any one case Ennis said he’s proud of how far the RNC has come as a force. When he joined, it was still a young force and the ex­pec­ta­tions were much sim­pler. Now peo­ple ex­pect a lot more of their po­lice force, and he feels they have gone a long way to­wards meet­ing that.

“Look­ing over the last 35 years we were forced to change sig­nif­i­cantly, and so has the com­mu­nity,” He said.

“The de­mands of polic­ing have be­come far more com­plex and I think the RNC, even though we may of had a side­step from time to time, I think if you’re look­ing at it from a crit­i­cal point of view, it would be fair to say the RNC has grown sig­nif­i­cantly and ad­vanced sig­nif­i­cantly in the last three decades.”

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