Occupy Ottawa, Conservation Officers, and Policing Networks in Canada’s Capital City


Conservation officers have been neglected in policing studies literature due to a bias toward municipal and public police. The work of conservation officers and that of conventional public police overlap in ways that have not been explored. This article examines National Capital Commission (NCC) conservation officers’ involvement in policing networks in Ottawa and, more specifically, NCC regulation of the Occupy movement in Canada’s capital city. Having pitched tents in Ottawa’s Confederation Park, Occupy participants fell under NCC jurisdictional authority. Contributing to emerging literature on policing of the Occupy movement and literature on policing networks, we analyse conservation officer occurrence reports on Occupy Ottawa obtained through federal level access to information requests and results of interviews with NCC officers. We demonstrate how NCC officers participate in campaigns for urban order, nuisance removal, and protest policing in a network including municipal and federal public police, private contract security, and federal intelligence agencies.

Canadian Journal of Criminology & Criminal Justice, 56(3)