Concrete steps in the fight against racial and social profiling

MONTREAL, Jan. 17, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - The mayor of Montréal, Mr. Gérald Tremblay, the director of the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM), Mr. Marc Parent, and the chairman of the board of the Société de transport de Montréal (STM), Mr. Michel Labrecque, announced today the course of action taken by the City and its services in the fight against racial and social profiling.

"We can be proud of living in a city that is inclusive, renowned for the richness of its diversity, a city where it is possible to live in harmony, where the rights and differences of each are fully respected. Profiling, whatever its guise, is unacceptable because it threatens the values of inclusion, equality, and dignity cherished by the population of Montréal. The fight against racial and social profiling is a major stake for our Administration and all municipal instances share in our efforts to end such profiling," said the mayor of Montréal, Mr. Gérald Tremblay.

Indeed, Ville de Montréal central services will play a key role in the implementation of racial and social profiling counter-measures and, with this purpose in mind, intends to create a Committee to integrate profiling counter-measures. Mainly, this committee will examine the six following stakes in order to meet the challenge of racial discrimination: public security, equality of access to employment, management and sharing of public spaces, human resources training, social development, and the fight against poverty.

This committee, composed of elected officials and representatives of the SPVM, the STM, the Office municipal d'habitation de Montréal, representatives of the boroughs, the Service du capital humain de la Ville de Montréal, and the Direction de la diversité sociale will be responsible for follow-up and coordination of the various measures and will propose accountability mechanisms.

As far as the SPVM is concerned, it has tethered its definition of racial profiling to that of the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse. Moreover, it has equipped itself with one of the most progressive plans in Canada.

"Last May, I committed myself to tabling a plan to prevent and counter the phenomenon of racial and social profiling that was said to exist within the SPVM. Today, I am pleased to announce that, following consultations with our various institutional partners and with our many cultural communities, we are launching a strategic plan to counter this phenomenon," said Marc Parent, director of the SPVM. "While this sort of plan, touching as it does on human issues, must evolve with social mores, it nevertheless remains one of the best in Canada," he added.

The SPVM has also adapted its internal policies to the operational reality of a cosmopolitan city such as Montréal.
For its part, the STM intends to pursue the series of measures it has brought to bear over the years to counter racism and discrimination. "The entire set of initiatives implemented by the STM since 1987 falls in line with the recommendations made by the Commission des droits de la personne et de la jeunesse du Québec. Indeed, the STM continues to exert itself in countering racial profiling, most notably through its code of ethics, the continuous training of its first-line employees, and the growth of its human resource pool so as to better represent the community it serves. "In this regard, 20 % of employees are members of a visible or ethnic minority, an 8 % increase since 2006," emphasized Mr. Labrecque.

Finally, we must keep in mind that Montréal is a major actor and a leader in the management of cultural diversity. Aside from the various declarations enshrined in its Charter of Rights and Responsibilities, Montréal was recognized, in the fall of 2011, by the Conseil de l'Europe and the Commission européenne as an "Intercultural Metropolis." This international recognition bears eloquent witness to our Administration's efforts to make this city one where some 120 communities that co-exist here can do so in harmony," concluded the mayor.


For further information:

Source: Darren Becker, attaché de presse
Cabinet du maire et du comité exécutif
514 872-6412

Information: Philippe Rousseau
Division des affaires publiques
Ville de Montréal
514 872-5012

Ligne médias
514 280-2015

Isabelle A. Tremblay
Affaires publiques
514 280-4940

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