University District Safety Initiative to take effect ahead of St. Patrick’s Day

Photo by Lucas Mulder/Kingstonist.

With St. Patrick’s Day quickly approaching, the City of Kingston Bylaw Enforcement team, Kingston Fire & Rescue and community partners are once again emphasizing the importance of celebrating responsibly and being aware of the dangers associated with reckless behaviour.

Further, the City of Kingston shared in a press release on Thursday, Mar. 7, 2024, the University District Safety Initiative is set to take effect in the coming days.

As stated by Kingston Police earlier this month, the University District Safety Initiative (USDI) will be in effect from Monday, Mar. 11 at 12 a.m. until Monday, Mar. 18 at 11:59 p.m. During this time, Bylaw Enforcement, Kingston Fire & Rescue, Kingston Police, and Frontenac Paramedics will have an increased presence in the University District, responding to any emergencies and targeting nuisance activities, according to a release from the City of Kingston.

“With the UDSI in effect, we’ll be actively addressing high-risk behaviour,” said Kyle Compeau, Manager of Enforcement Services at the City of Kingston. “We encourage everyone to familiarize themselves with the risks of reckless partying and the associated penalties, and to take steps to ensure they have a plan to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day responsibly.” 

In the release, the City provided the following information:

  • A “Nuisance Party” is defined as a gathering on Premises which, by reasons of the conduct of any one or more of the Person(s) in attendance, is characterized by behaviours including, but not limited to: public intoxication; the unlawful sale, furnishing, or distribution of alcoholic beverages or controlled substances; damage to public or private property; excessive sound; and more. The Nuisance Party and Noise By-Laws can be found on the City’s website. 
  • Administrative Monetary Penalties (AMPs) can be issued for nuisance party infractions. These fines can be issued by and paid to the City directly. Under the UDSI, a fine under the nuisance party bylaw or liquor licensing act can also result in a mandatory court summons.  
  • Individuals fined under the UDSI may also face non-academic sanctions through their post-secondary institution, depending on rules or policies in place at that institution. 

In the release, Kingston Fire Chief Monique Belair underscored the need for responsible behaviour.

“We strongly encourage everyone to act safely and watch out for one another. Responsible partying means not engaging in high-risk activities, keeping roads open for emergency vehicles and taking care of yourself and your peers,” she said. 

“This St. Patrick’s Day, please remember the role you play in keeping our community safe.”

The City noted that high-risk behaviours associated with large gatherings and nuisance activities can place a strain on Kingston’s emergency services. Every preventable call to the fire department, paramedics, and police diverts resources that could be crucial for responding to other emergencies. 

As outlined by Kingston Police in a March 1 news release, members of Bylaw Enforcement and Police Liaison Teams have been out in the University District and surrounding neighbourhoods, meeting with residents and educating them about UDSI, including information on the fines and penalties associated with nuisance behaviour.

According to the City, members of both teams are collaborating closely with community partners, including Queen’s University, St. Lawrence College, Kingston Fire & Rescue, Frontenac Paramedics, KFL&A Public Health, and Kingston Health Sciences Centre to ensure a safe and enjoyable St. Patrick’s Day celebration for all members of the community. The City thanks its partners for their dedication to keeping our community safe. 

One thought on “University District Safety Initiative to take effect ahead of St. Patrick’s Day

  • It’s good to know that Queen’s leaders are out there with the city enforcement teams knocking on doors and personally encouraging students to keep it cool….And why wouldn’t they be? Who better understands psychology, sociology and good business and government practices?

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