New human rights report finds extreme racial bias in Toronto policing
A stunning new report from the Ontario Human Rights Commission has found that a black person is almost 20 times more likely to be fatally shot by Toronto Police than a white person.
The OHRC is calling the report "unprecedented," as nothing of its kind has been completed before. This is the first time this wide of an investigation has been done.
It looks at seven years of data, dating from 2010 to 2017, and examines stop-and-question methods (including carding), use of force, and arrests in various "minor" categories, like small amounts of drug possession and bail compliance errors.
Inquiry into racial profiling by Toronto Police: Data from our #ACollectiveImpact report shows an over-representation of Black people in use of force cases that result in serious injury or death. Read and share: https://t.co/89KlZgi0J7 #StandUp4HumanRights pic.twitter.com/cIg2xUUraY— The OHRC (@OntHumanRights) December 10, 2018
The report also looks at the culture of policing, training, and accountability.
During the period studied, 187 cases were studied. In those, black citizens were overrepresented. In cases that ended in serious injury or death, 30 per cent of them involved a black citizen. 60 per cent of deadly encounters and 70 per cent of fatal police shootings involved a black person.
Ontario Human Rights Commission: "Between 2013 and 2017, a Black person was nearly 20 times more likely than a White person to be involved in a fatal shooting by the Toronto Police."— Tyler Watt 🇨🇦 (@tylerwhat16) December 10, 2018
This is unacceptable.https://t.co/nrGxn7U5cv
For comparison, black Torontonians make up less than nine per cent of the city's population.
In a reply statement from the Toronto Police Service, the force acknowledges the report and says it only adds to its own attempts to reduce profiling and potential racism.
Chief Commissioner Renu Mandhane calling on Toronto police, police board and more to take action in response to the data released in the report. “The data is disturbing and raises serious concerns about racial discrimination in use of force,” reads the report.— Wendy Gillis (@wendygillis) December 10, 2018
Members of the community were also interviewed regarding their personal experiences. Black people reported that driving a nice car resulted in being pulled over less, as well as driving in a "white neighbourhood" or other factors that reduce implicit bias.
The final report by the OHRC will be released in 2020. Until then, this remains the largest probe of racial bias in Canada.
Join the conversation Load comments