"OPERATION HEAT 2011": PROMOTING POSITIVE ENCOUNTERS WITH YOUTH

ORILLIA, ON, Feb. 18 /CNW/ - As communities across Ontario continue to weather the extreme cold temperatures and potential February woes of winter, kids will again have another reason to look forward to their next encounter with an Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) officer, thanks to a hot new youth initiative developed in partnership with Mac's Convenience Stores. "Operation Heat 2011" recognizes positive behaviour by our communities' youth in a very warm way…with a warm and delicious treat!

Based on last summer's highly successful Operation Freeze 2010, OPP officers who observe local youth doing random acts of kindness or exhibiting positive behavior will be able to recognize that young person with a "ticket" which is actually a coupon valid for a free hot chocolate beverage valid at all participating Mac's stores in Ontario throughout the winter of 2011.

In addition to recognizing good behaviour, Operation Heat 2011 promotes opportunities for OPP officers to interact with youth in a positive manner in support of the OPP Positive Ticketing Program. Officers may use the coupons to recognize youth for doing good deeds, participating in community activities, picking up trash, pro-actively deterring crime or observing safe-street crossing rules. Officers can also make use of the coupons as literal "icebreakers" to establish a dialogue with kids in their patrol area.

Though the reasons for issuing the coupons may vary, the end result of this youth positive ticketing initiative is the same for each youngster: a positive police - community interaction experience and a free hot chocolate beverage!

"Operation Heat provides law enforcement with an additional tool to initiate communication and reward our youth in a positive way", says Sean Sportun - Manager, Loss Prevention & Security for Mac's in Central Canada. "Mac's strives to be a leader in crime prevention and we are very excited about this new initiative and the positive message it helps deliver."

"The OPP is pleased to once again participate in an initiative that recognizes youth for responsible and caring behaviour," said Inspector Mark Allen, Manager of the OPP Crime Prevention Section. "Partnering with local business and engaging our youth in a positive manner builds partnerships that make our communities stronger."

SOURCE Ontario Provincial Police

For further information:

Inspector Mark Allen                                                                    
Manager, Crime Prevention Section                     
(705) 329 - 6435                                                               
Mr. Sean Sportun
Manager, Loss Prevention & Security
Mac's Convenience Stores, Inc
Central Canada
(416) 904 - 3805

Learn more at the OPP Crime Prevention Section, Community Issues internet site @ www.opp.ca


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