TORONTO - Constable Renato Valdez is a member of the Toronto Police Service.
He is also a Filipino having spent 7 years as frontline officer responding to high risk dispatch calls. Valdez has developed a deep sense of loyalty to his community that he carries over to his current position as liaison officer.
As liason officer, Valdez is responsible for solving community issues brought up by Filipinos, Koreans, Vietnamese and other ethnicities in Toronto's multicultural environment.
“Our mandate is to work with community members and their leaders and to find out their problems. Once we target their problems, we recommend solutions on how to resolve them. We are like mediators,” he said.
The peacekeeping approach comes from the values of tolerance and multiculturalism upheld by Valdez and the entire Toronto Police force.
Law enforcement is not new to Valdez as some of his friends and relatives back home are in the Philippine military and the police.
“There’s satisfaction inside me because this is really what I want to do--to help people, to help the community to the best of my ability. I think this is one way for me to give back to the community and help them in whatever they need,” he said.
Valdez came to Canada in 1997. He was not spared from the many challenges new immigrants face in a foreign country.
After working for years in different establishments he decided to go back to school and register at the Ontario Police College. He took up a four month training course and successfully graduated along with 400 aspiring police officers in Ontario.
Valdez added there’s a different kind of fulfillment being a Filipino member of the Toronto police service.
“We should have a harmonious relationship with our communities especially the Filipinos. We don't really have big problems in the Filipino community because I know most of us who came here are well educated, hard working people. We don’t cause any problems,” he said.
After nine years in the force, his love for the community and passion for his work continue to make him an example for kababayans doing what he loves, and doing it well for the sake of others.