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December 9, 2018 - December 15, 2018

One on one with new Police Station 9 Commander Luis Oliveira

It was a pleasure to sit down with newly installed Montreal Police Station 9 Commander Luis Oliveira at his office on Westminster Avenue.

Police Station 9 serves Côte Saint-Luc, Hampstead and Montreal West. Unlike his predecessor Jean  O’Malley, now the head of public security in Hampstead, Commander Oliviera does not have to split his time between Stations 9 and 11 (NDG).

¨PoliceCommanderandMe2                                                                                            Meeting with Commander Oliveira.

Commander Oliveira has a truly interesting back story, one that goes back before he joined the police force 28 and a half years ago.Raised in the Petite Patrie/Rosemount area. His parents spoke French at home, but sent him to English schools: Francesca Cabrini Elementary School (now Pierre Elliott Trudeau) in Rosemount, John F. Kennedy High School in St. Michel, Dawson College (Health Sciences) and then McGill University (Physical Education). While at McGill he played football for the Redmen as an offensive guard who wore number 54. His greatest memory: being part of the national champion Vanier Cup winning team in 1987. In 1984 he even earned a tryout with the CFL’s Montreal Concordes (a previous incarnation of the Alouettes coached by Joe Galat).

Commander Oliveira did not head directly to the police after graduation. First he actually served as a player-coach in a professional football league in France (Cannes). He then went on to become a physical education/geography/history teacher at Lindsay Place and Hudson High Schools on the West Island. At the age of 28 he switched gears and enrolled in CEGEP Maisonneuve for their Police Technology Program. His career as a cop began at the former Station 15 in NDG following that up with a stint downtown. Soon after he was  promoted to Sergeant and with that came a special opportunity: to travel to the civil war in Bosnia to represent the United Nations as a liaison to chase down  war criminals.

“It gave me a different perspective on life,’ said the Commander, who spent a year overseas and landed at Station 4 in Dollard des Ormeaux upon his return. But soon after he was off for another mission, this time to Jordan to teach and train new Iraqi police officers.

Seeking more of a 9 to 5 shift in order to spend quality time with his three children, Commander Oliveira landed an assignment at general police headquarters to coordinate the kind of missions he went on himself. “Over 10 years in that post I arranged for about 250 of our officers to serve overseas,” he explained.

Since arriving at Station 9 two months ago, the Commander has hit the ground running. When I was there he was working with Officer Marie-Christine Nobert, who does such a wonderful job in the area of outreach, and hosting representatives from different community organizations.

“I am thrilled to be here,” he said. “When I started, the tragic shooting occurred at the synagogue in Pittsburgh. This gave me an immediate opportunity to get to know the local community synagogue leadership as met with them and provided reassurance.

Commander Oliveira has also established a good relationship with his counterpart at Station 11, Anouk St. Onge.

Commander Oliveira has already  made it a point to attend the start of our monthly council meetings. We look forward to working with him!


The Commander meets with community representatives.


Author Caddell to promote his hockey book at The Samuel Moskovitch Arena

It will be a busy weekend for author and former Montreal West town councillor Andrew Caddell.  He will be in Montreal promoting his book The Goal: Stories about Our National Passion  on CTV Montreal with Mutsumi Takahashi  on Friday at noon, and then will be signing books on Saturday afternoon at Bonder Bookstore on Westminster in Montreal West, then off to The Samuel Moskovitch Arena on Mackle Road in Côte Saint-Luc that evening  for more signing and selling.  The book, which features stories from former Montreal Gazette writer Dave Stubbs, has received great reviews and reached the top 100 on Amazon winter sports books last year. 

Last year I brought Andrew to Royal West Academy to do a reading of his fabulous book.

It features 14 true short stories about hockey and life, from the title story, "The Goal" about Andrew's trials as a 10 year old goalie on the outdoor rinks in Montreal West, to a touching story aout his great-aunt and her idol, "The Gentleman," Jean Béliveau.  There is hockey history about Montreal Maroons fans who supported the Boston Bruins when the Maroons folded in the 1930s, women's hockey, the Habs-Leafs rivalry, and the longest ever NHL game, in 1936, which Andrew's dad, "Pip" Caddell attended. 

The book was originally self-published and launched in 2015, but picked up by Rock's Mills Press in Oakville last year and expanded, with colour photos and four new stories.  I heartily recommend it.  Andrew is now retired from the department of Global Affairs in Ottawa, but is busy: along with the book, he writes a weekly column on politics in the "Hill Times," and is partnering with an Australian company in emergency services technology for municipalities, QITCanada.  He has plans to move back to Montreal in 2019. 


Proud to have sponsored a resolution calling on Tour de l'Île to become charitable

The annual Tour de l'Île de Montréal has been a thorn in my side for decades. I am not a cyclist and I resent the fact that this event paralyzes the city one Sunday each year, as well as eating up the equivalent of $500,000 in Agglomeration funds while not raising a penny for charity.

Activist Murray Levine first connected with me on this issue over 30 years ago and I wrote about it in my newspaper column at the time. 

Organizers from Velo Québec continue to march to the beat of their own drum and with each City of Montreal administration not taking a stand on the issue they face little incentive to change. Now we have a Montreal Mayor in Valerie Plante who cycles to work.

If the Tour would encourage its riders to raise funds for their favorite charity, I might find this inconvenience a bit more bearable. 

With Murray Levine after the vote at City Council.

It was with this in mind that I moved the following resolution at our December 10 Council meeting, which passed with a majority:

WHEREAS the 30,000+ participants of New York’s TD 5 Boro Cycle are invited to raise
funds for charities and this year (and previous ones) raised $1 million;
WHEREAS the participants of multitudes of mass participation running, cycling, triathlon
and other mass participation self propelled athletic events around the world have optional
charitable fundraising components;
WHEREAS the participants of running events alone in the US raise over $1 billion per
year for charities;
WHEREAS the participants of the Marathon de Montreal are INVITED to raise funds and
may still be paying Montreal so that they may stage their event;
WHEREAS charities staging athletic events that raise funds at Parc Jean Drapeau
actually pay for the privilege;
WHEREAS Le Tour de L’Ile de Montreal receives $500,000 in funding and in kind support
from the Agglomeration;
WHEREAS the Tour de L’Ile de Montreal is a major inconvenience to pedestrians and
WHEREAS emergency vehicles are delayed due to the event;
Whereas there is no noticeable increase in tourism due to the event;
WHEREAS Dorval, Kirkland and Hampstead will not consider allowing Le Tour in unless
the participants are invited to raise funds for charities;
WHEREAS Cote St Luc, DDO and Laval have banned the event altogether;
WHEREAS a significant number of the participants come from Laval, the South Shore
etc. whose cities contribute no funds and suffer no inconvenience;
“THAT the Côte Saint-Luc City Council call upon the Agglomeration not to support
Velo Quebec with funding and free in kind support, until such time as all of the participants of Velo Quebec events on the Island of Montreal, are INVITED by to raise funds for charities via their participation in the events.”