Sergeant Gareth Joels is a 23 year member of the Calgary Police Service and current supervisor of the Hate and Extremism Team. This team is made up of two sections. The first is a program called “ReDirect” which partners police, social workers and mental health clinicians to support individuals and their risk factors on the path to violent extremism. The second is a group made up of an education coordinator, analyst and police officers who investigate Hate Crime files.
His life and work experience has led him to his role in Hate and Extremism. Gareth spent time in Northern Ireland growing up in an extremist environment. He later went back to Northern Ireland as a member of the British Army where he served in intelligence and surveillance roles. As a member of the Calgary Police Service, he served overseas on a one-year mission in Afghanistan mentoring the Afghan Police in Community Policing and Leadership. In 2015, Gareth was one of the original ReDirect program committee members and worked with diverse communities to gain the trust and support for ReDirect. He is currently enrolled in an advanced Terrorism Studies certificate from St Andrews University.