Lethbridge, Alberta – The Lethbridge Police Service is proud to announce the manager of The Watch program has been honoured with a Blackfoot name.
Jeff Cove, who started as a volunteer with The Watch before becoming the manager, was named Travelling Amongst by Piikani Elder Morris Little Wolf during a ceremony at the Multicultural Centre earlier today.
The name was presented in recognition of Cove’s years of service in Lethbridge within the urban Indigenous community and to provide guidance and direction in his future interactions with the Blackfoot people.
Little Wolf explained the name is symbolic of the collective and interconnected journey of all living things as they travel through life together.
“I am humbled beyond words and very grateful to receive the honour of having a Blackfoot name given to me,” said Cove.
Prior to joining and leading The Watch, Cove served with the Lethbridge Police Service for 29-years, retiring as an Inspector in 2014. He came out of retirement to once again serve the community – this time as a volunteer – when The Watch program was initiated in 2019, becoming the manager a year later.
The volunteer-based Watch program serves as the eyes and ears of social and community services agencies and emergency service providers. Volunteers help connect people with support agencies and organizations ranging from detoxification and treatment services to shelter and housing. In addition, they arrange for transportation and connect individuals on the street with family and friends. As a visible presence in the downtown core, they also assist in addressing negative behaviours.
In 2021, The Watch managed 6,517 events and issues, helping to free up police officer time.
After nearly three decades in policing, Cove is keenly aware of the complexity of social issues and the challenges faced by vulnerable community members. He is committed to raising awareness about Indigenous people, reconciliation, homelessness and addiction and working collaboratively to advocate for long term solutions that will help people wherever they may be in life.
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