Statement to the Community

by Tammy MacDonald

Statement to the Community

From the Mi’kmaq Confederacy of PEI

There have been unfortunate and inaccurate statements made on social media recently with regard to the building formerly utilized by the MCPEI Child and Family Services Program and PRIDE in Scotchfort, which must be corrected for accuracy and to provide reassurance to community members.

When the building was built, a professional security system firm, Thomas Edison Electric, was engaged. This was to provide recommendations and equipment to ensure that the building met appropriate standards to support the security and safety requirements for clients, staff and the community as a whole.

There was never, at any time, discussion or decision to install “hidden cameras”.  All equipment provided, including the choice on location and look for security cameras, was done so at the recommendation of the experts engaged to do the work.

The purpose of the system was to monitor the exterior of the building for liability reasons, as well as the interior “public” area of the building.  There were absolutely no recording devices in office areas.

Any recordings on the camera remain there for three weeks in the event an investigation, such as damage to property, is required, and the system then automatically deletes and starts the loop over.  There is absolutely no ability to record voices on this particular security system.  This system did not allow removal of video by MCPEI staff.

Since the system was installed, the recordings have only been accessed by MCPEI staff on approximately ten instances in relation to the footage to assist with investigation regarding either exterior vandalism or alarms. 

When the system was installed, signage was placed at exterior entrances of the building advising that the building is subject to video surveillance, which is standard practice.

It is unfortunate that the security system has been inaccurately represented on social media as “hidden cameras”.  The cameras are a part of a professionally installed and industry standard security system intended to protect community members, clients, staff and community property.  We regret the stress that these statements have caused in the community and understand completely why individuals would be upset with that type of characterization.  As a result, we felt compelled to publish this statement.

The Mi’kmaq Confederacy of PEI and all programs, in particular and especially the MCPEI Child and Family Program takes confidentiality extremely seriously.