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Winnipeg looking at long-term measures to improve security at Millennium Library

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A new report is recommending the city take steps to enhance security at Winnipeg’s Millennium Library nearly six months after a fatal stabbing.

A report before the community services committee recommends that the city implement safety and security improvements from July 1 to Dec. 31 at a cost of more than $1 million.

These improvements include having up to 10 community safety hosts available for Millennium Library and other branches during operating hours; having up to five additional security guards available for Millennium Library during operating hours; and implementing employee safety training.

The report also recommends getting a group of additional staff members, including community service workers and community safety hosts, to reopen and staff the library’s Community Connection space from July 1 to Dec. 31. This would cost an estimated $300,000.

Funds for both of these changes would come from the Community Services Department 2023 Council-approved operating budget.

“What I envision the future of the Millennium Library to be, would be safety and security that takes into account different entities, different organizations and different measures put in place,” said Mayor Scott Gillingham.

“The goal is to make sure the library is safe and secure and that our staff that work there feel confident in working there and that all the people that use the library feel safe and secure as well.”

Another suggestion in the report is the inclusion of $2.4 million annually in the city’s 2024-2027 multi-year operating budget for enhanced safety and security at libraries, and to continue to staff the Millennium Library’s Community Connections space.

It also proposes that the public service committee comes up with recommendations to redesign the Millennium Library’s lobby.

“Obviously, there’s more work to come,” the mayor said.

“This report shows that we’re not there yet. There’s more work to be done to get us to the place ultimately where our library has a long-term measure in place that’s safe and secure.”

In December 2022, 28-year-old Tyree Cayer was fatally stabbed at the Millennium Library.

Police arrested four teenagers in connection to the incident. On June 15, a 14-year-old male pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.

The other three teenagers were charged with manslaughter. The matter is still before the courts.

The community services committee will discuss the report on Thursday.   

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