In January, we sat down with Community Safety Worker Timothy Wong to find out what makes him tick.
Q: What drew you to OCH?
A: I chose this work because I wanted to make a difference in the community. Growing up near OCH neighbourhoods there was always a negative connotation linked to social housing. I wanted to get a better understanding of the community and change how the public views social housing.
Q: What does a typical day look like for you?
A: A typical day as a Community Safety Worker starts with the patrol car inspection. Then we sign out our radio, work cellphone and tablet. We then check the service queue for calls and place ourselves on duty. When we are not responding to a call, we complete proactive community patrols to connect with our tenants and conduct follow–ups with tenants about certain incidents.
Q: What are some of the challenges you face?
A: A lot of times, I attend calls and am the first point of contact for tenants that are frustrated with a situation. They may vent or voice their frustrations to myself or my fellow CSW’s and on occasion, they may also try to get physical with us. In these situations, we try to assist the tenant in the best way we can with the training we have received. We deal with mental health and addiction problems daily and sometimes it is hard to find a solution. However, we always provide the tenant with resources from the community to better assist them if we cannot come to a positive solution for their situation.
Q: What’s your favourite part of your job?
A: I like that no two calls are ever the same. We have a lot of discretion in terms of how we deal with calls. At the end of the day, we are there to provide a service to the tenants to better assist them in the community. I also enjoy attending community events where we get to communicate one-on-one with tenants and members of the public. We talk about what Community Safety Services does, we listen to their concerns and help find solutions.
Q: How long have you worked with Ottawa Community Housing?
A: I have been with OCH for just over a year.
Q: What did you study in school?
A: I studied Police Foundations at Algonquin College.
Q: What is your favourite quote? (Movie or Book)
A: “Life is not the amount of breaths you take. It’s the moments that take your breath away.” – Alex Hitchens (from the movie Hitch)