Tory supports Toronto Police Services Board taking action to confront racism

Jun 17 2020, 8:57 am

Mayor John Tory said he supports the Toronto Police Board considering recommendations on how the police can increase efforts to confront anti-Black racism.

On Friday, the Toronto Police Services Board will consider a report with recommendations such as, making the Board’s Anti-Racism Advisory Panels permanent.

And, include a permanent, stand alone Ethics, Inclusivity, and Human Rights training course that works on anti-racism, anti-Black racism and anti-Indigenous racism.

The training and program implementation would be done in consultation with Toronto’s  Confronting Anti- Black Racism (CABR) Unit.

“We are at a tremendous moment in our history where people around the world and here in our city are totally engaged in confronting anti-Black racism in our society, including in policing. We must not miss the opportunity to take advantage of an unprecedented consensus on this,” Tory said in a statement on Wednesday.

The mayor said that he is meeting with people and listening to people daily to see what the City government can do better to tackle the issues being presented.

“I am continuing to work with members of the Police Services Board and City Council to make sure we are doing everything we can to stop anti-Black racism and to dismantle systemic racism in our city,” Tory said.

The mayor acknowledged that he fully supports accelerating the pace of police reform in Toronto and believes in the recommendations going to the board this week.

He said the recommendation will result in “real tangible changes that will produce more accountable policing.”

The City will also continue to make changes to focus police officers on major crime and improving how they respond to residents experiencing a mental health crisis.

While Tory noted that some of the changes that need to be made in the area of policing will have to come from the Government of Ontario, he believes it will also be important that the Police Board and City Council both make it clear what changes must be made in order to help all municipalities across the province “usher in sensible, meaningful policing reform.”

On June 8, Tory said he was fast tracking the rollout of body cameras for police to make them more accountable.