Peel Police and the Ontario Human Rights Commission partner to address systemic racism and discrimination

  • September 23, 2021
  • Daniel Mulroy

In October 2020 the Peel Regional Police, the Peel Police Services Board and the Ontario Human Rights Commission (“OHRC”) signed a memorandum of understanding committing to work together to address systemic racism in the force.

The memorandum comes as Multiple concerns around systemic racism in the Peel police force have recently come to light. As cited in a CBC article (link) “a 2020 corporate risk management report that revealed 35 per cent of Black people living within the Peel police jurisdiction have been stopped by police, despite making up merely 10 per cent of the population.”

Predating the 2020 report, concerns of racism mounted when a six-year-old kindergarten student was handcuffed by police at her school. The case, JKB v. Peel (Police Services Board) (link) was heard at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario. The tribunal held that “race was a factor in the officers’ treatment of the applicant”.

In an effort to identify and address systemic racism, the Peel Regional Police, the Peel Police Services Board, and the OHRC have developed a survey to gather community input on experiences with and perceptions of the Peel Regional Police. This survey (link) is open until Thursday, September 30th, 2021.

The goal of this survey is to gain a better understanding of racialized individuals’ experience with the police to create systemic change and implement remedies.

Bakerlaw has extensive experience representing individuals with human rights complaints at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, the Canadian Human Rights Commission, and the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal. To learn more about bakerlaw’s work click here (link).

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