“Immersion MTL” to equip recruits better

18 july 2023

Starting this fall, recruits to the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) will have interesting experiences under the Police Integration Program (Programme d’intégration à la fonction policière), which already includes a theoretical and practical component. Called “Immersion MTL”, this initiative aims to bring together future police officers from different communities to strengthen the bond of trust between them and the public. It seeks to prepare recruits for the various realities in the field so that they can interact better with Montréal communities and consider certain complex interventions with vulnerable populations.

Immersive experiences in Montréal realities

During immersive experiences, recruits will be plunged into various environments, communities and organizations with which SPVM personnel intervene daily, often in emergencies. Without a uniform or a weapon, the recruits will go meet citizens, beneficiaries, stakeholders, volunteers and families. This will give them a better understanding of the complexities so they can assimilate the social issues related to diversity in Montréal. 

Concretely, the immersive experiences offered to the recruits will differ, depending on the mission and capabilities of the organizations and institutions that will host them. For example, they could attend the testimony of a person with a mental disorder, accompany a person with a handicap or a functional disability in daily tasks, or participate actively in francization courses for newcomers.

A human-to-human dialogue

“Immersion MTL” will allow construction, jointly with partners from different environments, of an innovative training pathway to bring about a real rapprochement between police personnel and Montréal communities, outside of emergency situations. This initiative will also be the opportunity for citizens, organizations and institutions to see the police differently. It will contribute to opening a human-to-human dialogue between the police and the populations, in a spirit of reciprocity, respect, dignity and humility.

For recruits, these immersive experiences will be the opportunity to open up to the world and discover other people as equals, experience their realities, challenges and issues, walk beside them, and maybe even put themselves in their shoes for an activity or a meal. In this way, they may discover themselves, question themselves, and become aware of their own human capabilities and how they can make a difference.

Finally, “Immersion MTL” will emphasize the human qualities and relationship skills necessary to accomplish the police mission in a complex and constantly changing environment. Let's remember that this initiative is intended for recruits for now, and not for police officers who are already serving.

Did you know?

When they are hired, SPVM recruits first participate in the Police Integration Program, which already includes a three-week theoretical and practical component. This program does not aim to repeat what the recruits already learned in their police techniques courses or during their internship at the École nationale de police du Québec (ENPQ). Instead, it targets the consolidation of all this learning into the metropolitan context.

In fact, it concentrates on theoretical learning opportunities (classroom presentations, workshops, etc.) and practical opportunities (e.g. scenarios in controlled contexts with actors). During simulations of police interventions in Montréal’s reality, the recruits prepare to use mobile work stations [PTM] to experiment with electronic writing of event reports, proceed with arrests and charges, and look for information in real time, among other things.

The new immersive component will therefore improve the Police Integration Program, which offers recruits a 360-degree view of police work so they protect and serve all populations in Montréal. “Immersion MTL” is based on the Professional Development Program - Immersion (Programme de développement professionnel – Immersion) of the Service de police de l’agglomération de Longueuil (SPAL). However,”Immersion MTL” will be adapted to the special conditions of Montréal and the needs and realities of the SPVM and the populations it serves.

Find out more

Other innovative police practices at the SPVM

  • ECCR (Équipe de concertation communautaire et de rapprochement)
  • EMRII (Équipe mobile de référence et d’intervention en itinérance)
  • EMIC (Équipe métro d’intervention et de concertation) french only
  • ESUP (Équipe de soutien aux urgences psychosociale)
  • PCA (Patrouilles conjointes autochtones)
  • EMIE (Équipe multidisciplinaire d’intervention dans les écoles) french only
  • ECHINOPS (Équipe communautaire hybride d’interventions novatrices OSBL Psychiatrie SPVM) french only