WPS, WPSB and OPC release Second Year Annual Report on joint Project Charter with the OHRC

TORONTO, March 28, 2013 /CNW/ - A report on second year activities undertaken as part of a joint Project Charter with the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) was released today by the Windsor Police Service (WPS), the Windsor Police Services Board (WPSB) and the Ontario Police College (OPC).

Initially launched in February 2011, the Human Rights Project Charter involves representatives from all four organizations working together to identify human rights issues within policing. The Project seeks to develop and implement initiatives that will identify, eliminate, and prevent any possible discrimination in the Windsor Police Service's employment practices and service delivery. It involves looking at existing policies and programs and developing strategies to address any existing or potential human rights concerns.

Here are some highlights:

Recruitment, Selection, Promotion, and Retention Subcommittee

  • a Workplace Census Directive that sets out policy and procedure on the collection of internal demographic data
  • a 2012 WPS Workplace Census
  • a Police Ethnic and Cultural Education program targeting pre-employment, culturally diverse youth aimed at fostering an interest in policing careers.

Accountability Subcommittee

  • a Human Rights Directive review checklist to check for human rights elements and ensure that all directives comply with the Ontario Human Rights Code.
  • research for collecting and keeping internal and external complaints with a human rights element in a central repository

Public Liaison Subcommittee

  • Community Consultation sessions in January and May 2012 on policing and human rights.
  • a telephone interpretation service in over 200 languages for persons with limited English proficiency
  • video remote interpretation for American Sign Language (ASL) to provide immediate communication with people who use ASL.
  • an Emergency 911 pamphlet for the public in six different languages and in electronic format on website.
  • Making greater use of website and social media platforms to promote awareness of multi-language communications and commitment to human rights and diversity initiatives
  • a handbook for Windsor Police Service Chaplains and vision for the Chaplaincy program

Accommodation Subcommittee

  • hiring of a student Workplace Facility Assessor to conduct an accessibility audit of Windsor Police Service HQ
  • focussing on issues such as, transportations of persons who require the use of a wheelchair or other aids, and the detention of persons who require the use of a service animal or support person.
  • an inclusive design review for internal dress code
  • development of a new human rights accommodation policy and procedure

Training Group

  • checklist to evaluate all WPS training programs to identify any human rights issues, including introducing a human rights training component
  • e-learning for providing service to members of the Deaf, Hard of Hearing or Speech Impaired (DHHSI) community
  • training sessions on basic human rights, accommodation, policy review, and inclusive design for Project members

"The second annual report is a reflection of collaboration with many community partners to help guide the Windsor Police Service on a path to inclusion, fairness, and equity. I am very proud of the progress made to date." - Chief Albert Frederick, Windsor Police Service

"The combined efforts of our project and community partners have moved the Windsor Police Service towards embracing a new culture of human rights. I look forward to the benefits this initiative will bring to our diverse community." - Mayor Eddie Francis, Chair, Windsor Police Services Board

"The Ontario Police College is pleased and proud to be a partner in this important project. It is important that the police not only treat everyone they interact with equally, but are perceived to be doing so. I look forward to the College's continued efforts, along with those of our colleagues, to ensure the members of the Windsor Police Service respect the human rights of the public, and those they work with on a daily basis." - Director Bill Stephens, Ontario Police College

"This second-year report shows good progress. I look forward to building on it and working together to realize positive human rights change in policing services for the people of Windsor." - Chief Commissioner Barbara Hall, Ontario Human Rights Commission

Media are invited to attend at Windsor Police Service HQ for the Windsor Police Services Board meeting on Thursday, March 28, 2013 at 1:00 p.m. for the release of the 2nd Annual Report. Chief Frederick and Mayor Francis will be in attendance. Interviews will take place following the meeting.

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SOURCE: Ontario Human Rights Commission

For further information:

Matthew D'Asti
Public Information Officer
Windsor Police Service
519-255-6700 ext 4250

Afroze Edwards
Senior Communications Officer
Ontario Human Rights Commission
Communications and Issues Management
416-314-4528
afroze.edwards@ohrc.on.ca

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Ontario Human Rights Commission

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