Backgrounder - Project Charter - Ontario Human Rights Commission/Toronto Police Service/Toronto Police Services Board

    TORONTO, March 21 /CNW/ - Over the past few years in efforts to resolve
human rights complaints, the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) approached
the Toronto Police Services Board (TPSB) and the Toronto Police Service (TPS)
to include specific public interest remedies.
    A committee including representation of all three parties (OHRC, TPSB and
the TPS) met during the spring and summer of 2006 to review change initiatives
already underway at the TPS, and to discuss avenues to resolve complaints.
    A joint working group of the three parties was then struck and a Project
Charter agreement was developed to support both the TPS' change initiatives
and to satisfy the OHRC's need to have public interest concerns addressed. The
Project Charter outlines how the three parties will work together to address
discrimination in employment and in the delivery of policing services to the
public. The Project will end when parties are satisfied that support is no
longer needed for the TPSB and TPS to fulfill its initiatives.
    The TPSB and TPS are responsible for their own change process and for
informing the OHRC of ongoing change initiatives. The OHRC's role is to
provide advice to the TPSB and TPS on their change initiatives, negotiate
target change objectives, and with the other parties, to monitor and report on
progress achieved.

    At the start, the Project specifically targets the following four key

    Recruitment, selection and promotion:

    -   support ongoing efforts to recruit and hire qualified individuals
        reflective of the diversity in the City of Toronto with a respect for
        human rights and regard for the language skills, cultural
        competencies and community ties necessary to provide policing
        services equitably.
    -   promote qualified individuals within the TPS with the goal of
        developing a TPS workforce that is reflective and representative, at
        all levels, of the diversity in the City of Toronto.
    -   if necessary, develop and implement further recruitment, hiring and
        promotional initiatives to meet such goals.


    -   provide diversity training and engage in on-going professional
        development by providing all staff with the skills and knowledge
        necessary to provide policing services that are anti-racist, non-
        discriminatory, professional, respectful, tolerant, inclusive and
        ethnoculturally sensitive.
    -   provide training on what constitutes racially-biased policing, racial
        profiling, racial discrimination and harassment, disability
        discrimination and harassment, or any other violation of the Ontario
        Human Rights Code.
    -   review and evaluate all current training programs, materials and
        curriculum, provided to both new recruits and current staff address
        issues of equity and diversity as well as racially-biased policing,
        racial profiling, racial discrimination and harassment, disability
        discrimination and harassment.

    Public Education:

    -   ensure that the public is aware of their rights and responsibilities
        when interacting with the TPS by ensuring that information is posted
        on the Web site, and by developing and distributing a plain-language
        brochure containing such information.


    -   develop and implement specific, individual, measurable and achievable
        performance indicators to support change initiatives by all levels of
        management of the TPS.

    The desired change/outcome will be monitored via regular public reports
to the TPSB by the Chief of Police. And, the OHRC will assess the
effectiveness of the monitoring and make appropriate recommendations.

For further information:

For further information: Jeff Poirier, Manager, Communications, Policy
and Education Branch, (416) 314-4539; Afroze Edwards, Sr. Communications
Officer, Policy and Education Branch, (416) 314-4528

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