Board Advisory Panels
Anti-Racism Advisory Panel (ARAP)
In April 2018, as a result of a recommendation made by the jury at the Inquest into the Death of Andrew Loku, the Toronto Police Services Board established an Anti-Racism Advisory Panel (ARAP).
Over the next two years, ARAP was involved in a number of important issues, including assisting in the drafting of a new Race-Based Data Collection, Analysis and Public Reporting Policy for the Board and the development of a framework to monitor the implementation of the recommendations made by the jury in the inquest into the death of Andrew Loku. At its meeting of August 18, 2020, the Board approved ARAP’s “Recommended Monitoring Framework for the Implementation of the Recommendations Arising from the Inquest into the Death of Andrew Loku,” concluding the inaugural mandate of ARAP.
At the same meeting, the Board approved 81 recommendations related to police reform that put into place a roadmap for comprehensive policing reform and include building new community safety response models, initiatives to address systemic racism and concrete steps to improve trust with our communities. In addition, a number of recommendations focused on ARAP directly, including a recommendation making ARAP permanent and building in certain requirements to its structure, and a recommendation naming its new Co-Chairs, Ainsworth Morgan and Anthony Morgan.
At its meeting of February 25, 2021, the Board approved the membership of ARAP (Min. No. P2021-0225-3.0. refers).
Board Member Nadine Spencer (Co-Chair)
A seasoned entrepreneur, Ms. Spencer has founded multiple businesses, including BrandEQ Group Inc., a social change marketing, communications and PR agency with operations in Toronto, New York, and Kingston, Jamaica. As former CEO of the Black Business and Professional Association (BBPA), she has helmed several initiatives aimed at fostering economic opportunities within the Black community at all levels, including the RiseUp pitch competition and entrepreneurship training program, the Business Advisory Implementation Development Services (BAIDS) program, and various innovative programs launched in collaboration with the Diversity Institute and Future Skills Centre. An immigrant to Canada early in her life, Ms. Spencer is particularly attuned to the challenges faced by newcomers with intersectional identities, especially in the Black community, where over 60% of the population identify as immigrants. Thus, as a founding board member of the Federation for African Canadian Economics (FACE) and founder of the Boss Women program, Ms. Spencer has spearheaded paradigm-shifting, culturally relevant strategies to promote generational wealth among Black Canadians. Ms. Spencer was appointed to the Toronto Police Services Board in April 2023.
Councillor Lily Cheng (Co-Chair)
Lily Cheng is the Councillor for Ward 18 Willowdale, taking office on November 15, 2022. A Willowdale resident for over a dozen years, Councillor Cheng is a passionate, visionary leader in the community. Four years ago, Councillor Cheng co-founded We Love Willowdale (WLW), a movement created after the tragic van attack to help the community grieve and heal. Her journey as a community organizer began 9 years ago with the founding of North York Moms, a thriving community on Facebook of over 11,000 moms. Councillor Cheng has tirelessly worked for Willowdale for many years including spearheading the Willowdale Covid Response Network to support the community through the pandemic. Councillor Cheng has a track record of identifying problems in Willowdale and taking action. Her advocacy led to the establishment of a much needed walkable Yonge and Sheppard EarlyOn Child and Family Centre. She has also established programs and support for challenges often overlooked by the government including seniors accessing grocery shopping support during the pandemic and food insecurity experienced by families. During the pandemic, she addressed social isolation by expanding Willowdale Neighbours Connect, an active online community she started for the neighbourhood that has helped many feel a deeper sense of belonging in Willowdale. Councillor Cheng’s greatest strength is described as being able to inspire connectivity and participation in Willowdale for the greater good and building the infrastructure necessary to make things happen. Councillor Cheng was appointed to the Toronto Police Services Board in November 2022.
Shamso Elmi is the co-founder of Mending a Crack in the Sky (MCIS), a dynamic program that consists of a dedicated group of Somali mothers who are passionate about creating safe spaces to heal, mobilize, advocate and navigate socioeconomic systems. The group is inspired by a Somali proverb stating that, “if people come together, they can even mend a crack in the sky.” In addition to MCIS, Shamso’s dedication and passion have allowed her to become a symbolic figure in the community. Advocacy has become Shamso’s legacy through her work as a workshop facilitator, interpreter, community worker, and addressing youth radicalization.
Michele Hamilton has been an equity seeker and advocate since childhood. After studying sociology and criminology at the University of Toronto, she began her career as a Social Service Worker, supporting adults with developmental and mental health disabilities. She was active in union and worker rights before studying law at Osgoode Hall Law School, where she was the local president and the national VP of the Black Law Students Association of Canada. Michele articled at the African Canadian Legal Clinic which focused on addressing systemic anti-Black racism. Michele has worked with labour organizations for over 20 years and has a special interest and expertise in human rights and police law. She was In House Counsel and also served as the anti-Harassment Ombudsperson to the Ontario Provincial Police Association from 2012 to February 2021.
Clinton Reid brings with him over 12 years of experience in the affordable housing non-profit sector, social entrepreneurship, and community development. He is the Coordinator of “Collective Impact,” a community-led collective focused on promoting a positive police and community dialogue, as well as educating the community on changes to police regulations and policies. Clinton has also worked at Toronto Community Housing in various roles, such as Youth Engagement Coordinator and Social Enterprise & Partnership Coordinator, as well as the Community Economic Development Coordinator, where he worked on community initiatives focused on safety and economic opportunities for residents living in Toronto Community Housing neighbourhoods.
K’Mesha Maloney is an Afro-Indigenous community member who uses her background in Indigenous Visual Culture and Psychology to provide outreach and advocacy for the Indigenous, Black and LGBTQI2S+ communities for over a decade; this includes working in homeless shelters. As a survivor of human trafficking she uses her lived experience to facilitate workshops for at-risk youth, law enforcement, health care providers and educators through an anti-oppressive and trauma informed framework. It is her goal, while being a part of the Anti-Racism Advisory Panel, that she creates transparency and accountability to initiate progressive changes between marginalized communities and the Toronto Police Service. She recognizes that in order to create change being a leader requires being an effective listener first.
Asante Haughton is a seasoned mental health and social justice advocate, specializing in elucidating the impacts of racism, poverty and community violence on wellbeing. With experience as a front-lines case manager with Pathways to Education, and now as a peer support specialist, trainer and program manager with Stella's Place, Asante seeks to foster justice and equity for the underserved and marginalized. He is a 2x TEDx speaker, was named as one Canada's top 150 mental health difference makers by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, is a contributing editor to Inspire Magazine, a working group member of the government of Canada's Mental Health of Black Canadians fund, a host of the music making peer support web show, Cypher, and co-founder of the Reach Out Response Network, an organization advocating to bring about non-police led mobile mental health crisis reform. Focused on building bridges, Asante believes that dialogue, cooperation and community can generate solutions to most of society's toughest problems.
Yavuz Selim Topbas is a youth policy leader and second-year student at Carleton University pursuing a Bachelor of Public Affairs & Policy Management degree, with a specialization in International Policy Studies. Yavuz Selim has previously served as the President of the Toronto District School Board’s Student Senate, where he represented roughly 250,000 students at the Board level. As part of this role, he advocated for racially and fiscally equitable Board policies, ranging from greater funding for racialized high schools to geographically equitable representation in student politics through electronic elections. Yavuz Selim is currently working towards building a policy career in the public service. In addition, he occasionally works as a consultant on strategy, community engagement and diversity, offering a unique youth perspective to the discussion.
Shayle Graham is a social philanthropist who builds authentic partnerships with community organizations and institutions, for the advancement of racialized youth and for the sustainability of Black communities. Through her experience as a coach in the areas of equity, anti-racism and anti-oppression; a community activist who partners with stakeholders to decrease the chances of marginalized youth having negative experiences with law enforcement; and the founder of a non-profit organization that disrupts the barriers preventing Black girls from occupying particular spaces, Shayle dedicates her time, skills, resources and networks to create systemic impact.
Andre Fullerton, MBA is a father, educator, community developer and social justice change agent who maintains a flair for fostering positive relations with the community and other stakeholders. With over 20 years of experience working professionally in various capacities of community engagement, Andre has worked with a variety of organizations including Toronto Community Housing Corporation, Tropicana Community Services and currently with the Toronto Catholic District School Board. A graduate of the Ivey Business School, Andre is eager to share his educational, work and life experiences to this committee in hopes of working together with the Toronto Police to make our communities safe.
H. Roy Wellington
Born and raised in Toronto, Roy Wellington received his law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School (York University) in 2012. Since serving his articles at the Ministry of the Attorney General for Ontario, Crown Law Office - Civil, he has practiced administrative and criminal defence law throughout the province. In representing clients, Roy examines the real world outcomes of police policies and procedures as experienced by racialized and otherwise marginalized communities. Roy has represented clients at two Coroners Inquests and participated in the Board’s virtual town hall in July, 2020.
Paul Bailey is a strategist, urban planner and Interim Executive Director at the Black Health Alliance. Paul has spent the last decade designing interventions focused on: health and well-being, community violence, mental health and addictions, and the social service sector as it relates to improving outcomes for Black children, youth and families. His work is currently focused on social development, health equity, and addressing the causes of neighbourhood distress and inequality.
Ayderus Alawi has worked as a criminal defence lawyer in the Greater Toronto area for almost a decade. Ayderus attended York University where he completed both an Honours bachelor's degree in political science followed by a law degree. Ayderus has spent over twenty years working in the community in a variety of roles where he has maintained a strong commitment to work towards addressing issues of discrimination and systemic issues including anti-Black racism.
Destiny Guthrie is an advocate passionate about upholding the rights of marginalized and vulnerable populations. She has worked in the field of social services and corrections for three years, working with racialized minorities, youth, and disadvantaged populations. A Masters graduate in Criminology and Socio-legal studies, Destiny would like to contribute to the promotion of anti-oppressive policies and practices through her work on ARAP.
Horace Knight is a retired Human Resources Manager having worked in the municipal government and education sectors. Throughout his career, Horace provided advice and support to managerial staff on a range of policies which included anti-racism. This involved conducting investigations and when required issuing discipline to policy violators. He is currently a member of committee at his church that is organizing and running anti-racism seminars and learning series on anti-racism. Horace is also a director and past chair of the Stonegate Ministry Board, a charity in Southeastern Etobicoke catering to that low-income neighbourhood.
Shane Martínez has practiced criminal defence and human rights law in Toronto since 2011. He earned his LLB at the University of New Brunswick, and subsequently earned his LEC at the Norman Manley Law School in Jamaica. In 2017, Shane served as co-counsel for Across Boundaries during its intervention at the Coroner's Inquest into the death of Andrew Loku. Shane regularly acts as pro bono counsel for the advocacy group Justice for Migrant Workers, and also serves on the Board of Directors at both Luke's Place and PASAN.
Rayon Brown is a seasoned community development business professional, deeply driven by the holistic approach grounded in principles of empowerment, human rights, inclusion, social justice, self-determination and collective action. Currently, Rayon is the Community Economic Development Director of Helping Neighbourhoods Implement Change - a non-profit organization deeply rooted in under-serviced communities, to equip individuals with tools and resources, and build their capacity through training and mentorship.
Keith Talley is a senior IT executive, with a successful track record in strategic planning and implementation of transformational IT solutions, recommending process improvements while creating and aligning high-performing teams. In addition to Information Technology, Keith has held key roles in Operations, Vendor Management and Facilities Management. Keith looks to draw on his experience as an IT leader, as well as his ability to “think outside of the box,” to assist ARAP in developing innovative solutions to confront racism in policing.
Jennifer Chambers is the Executive Director of the Empowerment Council, an organization that serves as a voice for clients/survivors and ex-clients of mental health and addiction services, primarily of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. The Empowerment Council had standing at the Andrew Loku Inquest and informed the resulting recommendations. She was a Co-Chair of the Board’s former Mental Health Sub-Committee and is also co-chair of the Board’s Mental Health and Addictions Advisory Panel (MHAAP).
Dawnmarie Harriott is the Coordinator of Voices from the Street, a speakers bureau composed of people who have experienced various forms of marginalization and who provide public education to a range of audiences from students to policy makers. She also coordinates a Relief Worker training program and offers training on Peer Work to a variety of non-profit organizations. As a former graduate (2007) of the speakers bureau, Dawnmarie shares her lived experience of the many systemic barriers she had to overcome and she advocates for policy change on issues related to domestic violence and poverty. Dawnmarie firmly believes that people with lived experience of all forms of marginalization should be included in research and service provision.
Superintendent Stacy Clarke (TPS Representative)
Superintendent Stacy Clarke is the Unit Commander of the Community Partnerships and Engagement Unit. Stacy’s diverse policing career has included working in primary and community response units, intelligence, homicide, criminal investigative bureau and the Toronto Police College. She is known for implementing the Province’s Street Check Legislation and Co-chairing the Police and Community Engagement Review (PACER 2.0) Committee. She is also a past Service representative on the Board’s Anti-Racism Advisory Panel (ARAP).
Superintendent Ishmail Musah (TPS Representative)
Ishmail Musah currently holds the rank of Inspector with the Toronto Police Service and is in his 22nd year of policing. His current role is that of a Duty Senior Officer within the Toronto Police Operations Centre. Ishmail has extensive frontline divisional policing experience throughout the city. He has worked from Parkdale to The Beaches, from Little Jamaica to the Danforth and many places in between. His experience also includes working in plainclothes units, traffic collision investigations unit and the community response unit. As a Staff Sergeant, Ishmail has been the Officer In Charge of Primary Response Units, the Public Safety Response Team and of a Divisional Community Response Unit. Ishmail was also one of the leads in the Service’s Organizational Change Management Unit. This was the first organizational change management unit in Canadian policing history. The unit worked to manage the “people side of change” as the Service began to implement the modernization recommendations set forth in the 2017 Action Plan: The Way Forward. Ishmail held the role of Executive Officer to the Deputy Chief of Community and Neighbourhoods Command, where he assisted with the operations and performance for the Command. As part of his work as Executive Officer, Ishmail worked closely with the Community Partnership and Engagement Unit and helped to oversee the implementation of the Services’ new Mental Health and Addiction Strategy.
Sergeant Ian Searles – Neighbourhood Officer, 55 Division (TPS Representative)
Police Constable Cailia Khan – Neighbourhood Officer, 32 Division (TPS Representative)
Ian Williams, Director - Information Management (TPS Representative)
Ian Williams is the Manager of Analytics & Innovation Unit. Ian has extensive experience in information management and analytics and the work of Ian’s teams support members across the Toronto Police Service, and community members. Ian’s teams created, and continue to develop, the Toronto Police Service Public Safety Data Portal, an industry-leading open data and analytics site that supports community safety and wellbeing awareness. Ian drives information management and analytics practices to improve community safety and wellbeing outcomes for all stakeholders.
Svina Dhaliwal, Chief Administrative Officer - Corporate Services Command (TPS Representative)
Svina Dhaliwal joined the Service in 2018 as the Director of Finance and Business Management and has recently assumed the role of Director of People and Culture. Svina oversees all aspects of a member’s employee journey with the Service; hiring, training, wellness, equity and inclusion, payroll & benefits, labour relations, workforce analytics and human resource strategy. She also serves as Co-Chair for the Service’s French Community Consultative Committee. Svina has extensive experience in organizational transformation including strategy development, service delivery models, change management and value realization. She is a Board Director for the Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences Foundation and a financial literacy volunteer with the Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario.
ARAP's mandate is to advise and support the Board in relation to policing and racism, anti-Black racism and anti-Indigenous racism, including:
- Identifying current issues relating to racism, anti-Black racism, anti-Indigenous racism and policing, including developing and/or recommending policies, strategies and action plans for approval by the Board;
- Monitoring the implementation of the Toronto City Council’s Action Plan to Confront Anti-Black Racism;
- Monitoring the implementation of the Board’s Race-Based Data Collection, Analysis, and Public Reporting Policy, including reviewing the data analysis and any interventions developed by the Service to address racial disparities for feedback and recommendations for enhancement;
- Monitoring the implementation of the recommendations from the Andrew Loku Inquest through the monitoring framework previously developed by ARAP;
- Reviewing Service reports on Conducted Energy Weapon (CEW) use and making recommendations for enhancement;
- Monitoring the implementation of inquest recommendations as appropriate;
- Reviewing the development and implementation of all Service training and offering recommendations for enhancement, including training on anti-racism;
- Monitoring the implementation of the recommendations in the present report and providing advice to the Board on necessary enhancements and improvements; and
- Participating in the community consultation process on the Toronto Police Service’s annual budget.
- Board Member Nadine Spencer (Co-Chair)
Mental Health and Addictions Advisory Panel (MHAAP)
On This Page
The Board, at its meeting of February 21, 2019, approved the establishment of the Board’s Mental Health and Addictions Advisory Panel (MHAAP) (Min. No. P36/19 refers) which superseded its current Mental Health Sub-Committee.
As noted at that time, MHAAP is comprised of members of the Board, members of the Service and members of the community, ensuring that this includes representatives from organizations run by and for people with lived experiences. It is important that the membership reflect the diversity of Toronto with representatives from major as well as more locally-based groups or organizations serving youth and marginalized and racialized groups. An emphasis was placed on including individuals with both client-focused and direct lived experience of mental health and addictions issues (includes lived experience in addictions or substance use, including harm reduction and service delivery) as well as those with expertise in the areas of law and human rights, accountability and data.
In particular, it was stated that there must be at least two members with direct lived experience of mental health and addictions issues or who are connected to an organization representing people with lived experience of mental health and addictions issues as part of the membership of the MHAAP.
As the report states, MHAAP will also have a number of representatives from the Toronto Police Service.
At its meeting of December 16, 2022, the Board approved the current membership of MHAAP (Min. No. P2022-1216-4.0. refers).
Lisa Kostakis, BSW, RSW – Toronto Police Services Vice Chair, MHAAP Board Co-Chair
Appointed as a Toronto Police Services Board Member in July 2020, Lisa Kostakis has over 30 years of experience within the non-for profit sector, working and leading organizations throughout the City of Toronto. She is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Believe To Achieve (BTA), a registered non-profit organization which provides opportunities through educational, social, recreational and creative programs and services, to support our community, so that every child and youth feels empowered, loved, and supported, while enriching their everyday lives. From 2014 to 2022, she served as the Executive Director of Albion Neighbourhood Services, Albion Boys & Girls Club, a multi-service agency that has been serving the GTA for 50 years, previously serving as the organization’s Director of Programs and Services from 2007-2014. Lisa is a graduate of York University with a degree in Psychology, a graduate of Ryerson University with a Social Worker degree, and a member of the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers. Lisa was also one of the “Founders/Steering Committee Members” of the FOCUS (Furthering Our Community by Uniting Services) Rexdale table, which now operates across Toronto. These are multi-disciplinary tables that address elevated risk situations – an initiative developed by the Toronto Police Service, in partnership with the United Way and the City of Toronto in 2012. Throughout her career, Lisa has been committed to developing and sustaining strong partnerships among community service organizations, and becoming a strong leader in many initiatives, in areas such as community safety, accessible services, government relations, systemic change, and new stakeholder partnerships. Lisa was also a recipient of the Queen Diamonds Jubilee Medal in 2013, in recognition of her many years of service in the various communities that she has served throughout her career.
Kevin Haynes – Community Co-Chair
Kevin Haynes works in the Provincial System Support Program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). He is the Provincial Network Lead for SAPACCY, a provincial network of integrated and culturally responsive mental health and substance use services for Black youth in Ontario, and an Adjunct Lecturer in the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work at the University of Toronto. Kevin has been a member of MHAAP since its inception, and is also a member of the Mobile Crisis Intervention Team (MCIT) Steering Committee. He has developed and delivered numerous trainings on the intersections of race, mental health and policing for Members of the Toronto Police Service, as well as trainings to support the implementation of non-police responses to mental health emergencies in the community for the Toronto Community Crisis Service.
Yvonne is a professor in the Faculty of Social and Community Services at Durham College in Oshawa. She teaches courses in the Police Foundations program, as well as coordinating the Advanced Law Graduate Certificate program. Prior to her teaching role, Yvonne was a senior police constable and trainer with the Toronto Police Service. She spent 13 years with the Service, where she held various roles including undercover and, investigative positions, along with acting as a coach officer to new recruits. A certified facilitator with the Mental Health Commission of Canada, she currently teaches Mental Health First Aid to first-year students and is a contract instructor with TNT Justice Consultants for their special constable training. Yvonne holds a Police Foundations Leadership diploma from Humber College and a Master of Arts degree in Learning and Technology from Royal Roads University. The focus of her thesis research was on the use of simulation to train police officers in how to interact with Persons in Crisis. As a former police officer, Yvonne has first-hand knowledge of the challenges and successes related to police interactions with persons experiencing addictions and/or crises and is passionate about research and education in this area. Yvonne will be commencing her doctorate of criminal justice education in January 2023.
Sonya Bourgeois is an Associate Director with Toronto Public Health at the City of Toronto, where she oversees the Toronto Drug Strategy and the Toronto Indigenous Health Strategy. Responding to the drug poisoning crisis, promoting mental health and wellness, and working with Indigenous partners on key health initiatives are among her top priorities. Previous to her work with the City of Toronto, she held a number of policy portfolios in the Ontario Public Service, focused in the areas of violence against women, community services and health system strategy, public health, and gender-based policy. Sonya is currently the President of the Redwood Shelter, a safe haven for women and children fleeing violence. In this capacity, she is an advocate for gender rights, anti-racism, and anti-oppression, and works closely with the Board of Directors to influence the strategic vision of the organization and the overall economic and social well-being of women and children who access the Redwood’s services. She is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Wellesley Institute, and holds a Masters in Social Work, with a focus in policy and research.
Rachel Bromberg is the Co-Founder of the Reach Out Response Network, which supported the City of Toronto in developing the Toronto Community Crisis Support pilots. She is also the Executive Director of the International Crisis Response Association, which is a network connecting individuals across Canada and the United States who are building or leading alternative crisis response programs in their communities. Rachel is currently working with the Region of Durham, ON, New Orleans, LA, and Northampton, MA to support these municipalities in developing alternative crisis response models. Rachel sits on the Ontario Peer Development Initiative's Board of Directors, the Mental Health Commission of Canada's National Advisory Plan Committee, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health's Constituency Council, and the Toronto Regional Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee. Rachel is also a JD/MSW student at the University of Toronto, and she works with the education department at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health providing trauma-informed de-escalation training to inpatient and outpatient staff.
Jennifer Chambers is the Executive Director of the Empowerment Council, an organization that serves as a voice for clients/survivors and ex-clients of mental health and addiction services, primarily of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. The Empowerment Council had standing at the Andrew Loku Inquest and informed the resulting recommendations. She was a Co-Chair of the Board’s former Mental Health Sub-Committee and is also a member of the Board’s Anti-Racism Advisory Panel (ARAP).
Susan Davis is the Executive Director at Gerstein Crisis Centre, a 24-hour Mental Health and Substance Use Crisis Centre in Toronto. She has over 30 years of experience in the community mental health field, with many years in direct service, as well as leadership. Susan actively engages in the development of innovative services, partnerships and systems that improve access to the supports people need and that recognize the impact of the social determinants of health on people’s overall well-being. She currently chairs the Downtown and Toronto Region Human Service and Justice Coordinating Committees. Susan is a Board Member at Working for Change, a social enterprise organization that provides employment opportunities for individuals living with mental health and substance use issues. She is committed to creating services and systems that consider the whole person, treat all people with respect and dignity, and create opportunities for people living to maximize their well-being.
Leah Dunbar has over 15 years of experience in health care and education project management in Canada and internationally. A program manager and bridge builder, she approaches complex programs, partnerships, and community initiatives with optimism and unity. In her current role, Leah is working to support public safety personnel / first responder mental health initiatives. She is also board chair at Cota Health, a community-based organization that supports adults with mental health and cognitive challenges to live well within their communities. Previously, Leah managed a mental health partnership between six Toronto hospitals and the Toronto Police Service (MCIT – Mobile Crisis Intervention Teams), worked in various community health projects across Ontario, and gained experience as a teacher in Ontario and Qatar. Leah holds a Bachelor of Arts from Queen’s University and Master of Education from Niagara University.
Susan Gapka (she\her\elle) is a dedicated campaigner for social justice highlighting her record on affordable housing, homelessness, mental health, harm reduction & lesbian, gay, bisexual & trans issues since coming out as a community leader more than 20 years ago. Susan helped establish the Toronto Police Service’s LGBTQ Community Advisory Committee and has served as a Toronto Community Housing tenant representative on the 51 Division CPLC for more than a decade. Susan has served on the Toronto Local Advisory Committee & as Toronto representative on the National Consumer Panel of the At Home/Chez Soi Research Demonstration Project, the Housing Component for the Mental Health Commission of Canada. She has also served as a Board Member on the Empowerment Council funded by the Centre for Addiction and Mental (CAMH) for several terms as co-chair. Susan has a degree in Political Science from York University & a diploma in Community Work from George Brown College. Susan is a proud recipient of the City of Toronto Pride Award (2004), CAMH Courage to Come Back Award (1999) and Canada 150 Difference Maker in Mental Health (2017) and awarded a Key to the City of Toronto (2018) and most recently the Grace Hartman Award with Canadian Union Public Employees (CUPE) National (2021).
Andrew (Andy) O’Brien
Andrew has over two decades of entrepreneurial experience, helping grow and sell four companies. He is the CEO and entrepreneur of a multi-million dollar podcast production firm, and the long time business partner of Michele Romanow (Dragons’ Den). He is the founder of Obie & Ax Inc. who are also hosts and vendors for the Toronto Police Service’s podcast 24 Shades of Blue, a podcast that gives the Toronto community a behind the scenes view of the Service's activities. In addition, his company works with firms across the globe to assist them in Diversity and Inclusion efforts. A recovering addict with over four years of recovery, Andrew runs a Narcotics Anonymous meeting weekly, and works closely with Homewood Health Centre for whom he has opened as their nationwide keynote presenter. He also speaks to students across Canada, sharing his story of addiction and recovery. Andrew also serves as a member of the Board of Governors for the Mackenzie Institute, which globally consults, advises on and contributes to numerous international security and defense conferences
Olu Quamina has worked in both the non-profit and public sectors for 25 years, and has an extensive background in community engagement and social development. He is the founder and former Executive Director of Concrete Roses Youth Services, a non-profit organization focused on developing youth violence prevention and community safety interventions. In his former role as Community Development Officer-Youth Violence Prevention with the City of Toronto, he co-chaired two FOCUS Toronto tables (Rexdale -23 Division & Downtown West -14 Division). He is the recipient of the Mayor’s Community Safety Award, the City of Toronto’s Community Impact Award and the YMCA’s National Peace Medallion. Currently, Olu works as Manager of Revitalization and Renewal Communities with Toronto Community Housing Corporation. He also leads a private practice focused on addressing the mental health impacts on frontline service providers. He is a registered social worker and holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work.
Peter Rampat began working for the Toronto Police Service in 2003, and was a police constable for 15 years, working in a variety of Divisions, including 53 and 43. During his time in 43 Division, Peter established a not-for-profit martial arts club for at-risk youth through ProAction Cops and Kids, which involved many police officers helping to mentor young people, many of whom went on to become police officers or join the military. For this work, Peter was presented with the Jack Sinclair Award in 2009 for the most innovative police youth program. Peter spent the last four years of his policing career at the Training and Education Unit at the Toronto Police College as a training constable, where he developed the knowledge, skills, and abilities to teach a variety of police-related subject matter during in-service training. Peter’s focus of study while at the College was to integrate holistically best practices in de-escalation into use of force theory. His work in this area earned him a seat as a critical decision-making committee member and later, on the expert technical table with the Ministry of the Solicitor General, focused on evaluating police de-escalation training in Ontario. In March of 2019, Peter resigned as a police constable with the Toronto Police Service and accepted a position at the Ontario Police College, as the lead instructor of the officer safety program. In that role, Peter has been responsible for researching best practices, collaborating with experts, and implementing training for current and future police officers to de-escalate persons in crisis.
Steve Lurie was the Executive Director of Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Toronto Branch, a nation-wide charitable organization that promotes the mental health of all and supports the resilience and recovery of people experiencing a mental illness, from 1979 until his retirement in 2020. CMHA had standing at the Andrew Loku Inquest and informed the resulting recommendations. Steve has been working with TPS on mental health issues in a variety of capacities since 1989. He is currently the Co- Chair of MHAAP and is the Co-Chair of the City of Toronto Community Advisory Table for the Community Crisis Project. He was named to the Order of Canada for his work in mental health as an administrator, scholar and advocate.
Benjamin (Benni) Zaiser
Benni Zaiser is a behavioral scientist with an interest in the cognitive processes that underlie de-escalation in crisis intervention contexts. His research regularly includes police officers and translates into evidence-based de-escalation, communication, counter-bias, and anti-stigma training. Benni's commitment to improve mental health and addictions supports across Greater Toronto started when he became a Distress Centres volunteer responder. There, he had the opportunity to intimately explore the experience of mental illness, addictions, and crisis of callers from Toronto and beyond. He is now a member of the Board of Directors and the Spirit of Volunteerism Committee of Distress and Crisis Ontario. He works as an officer with York Regional Police's Mental Health Support Team, the service's equivalent of the Mobile Crisis Intervention Team. He sees his mission in leveraging the distinct perspectives he has as an active researcher, a community resource, and as a police officer, to gain a better understanding of both individual as well as systemic challenges that mental illness and addictions pose those involved in citizen-police encounters.
Deputy Chief Lauren Pogue
Lauren Pogue is a 34-year veteran of the Toronto Police Service, and presently the Deputy Chief of Community Safety Command. This Command pillar oversees Mobile Crisis Interventions Teams, as well as front-line resources that provide proactive and reactive public safety services, in partnership with key stakeholders and the many diverse communities in Toronto. She is the executive sponsor to the Aboriginal Internal Support Network, and is also the Co-Chair of the Chief’s Aboriginal Consultative Committee, working closely with the Indigenous community to continue building meaningful partnerships.
Sgt. John Liggio
Sergeant John Liggio is the Toronto Police Service’s Mental Health Coordinator. After completing the Police Foundations program at Humber College, John began his career with the Toronto Police Service in November of 2000 at the age of 21 . He spent one year in Court Services(Old City Hall) before being hired as a Police Constable in December of 2001. John began his Policing Career at 33 Division in June of 2022, and over seven years there he held various positions, the majority of which involved front-line policing duties. In January of 2009 John transferred to the Toronto Police College where he was an In Service Training Instructor. There he was responsible for training Recruits, and officers who required their yearly use of force requalification’s. In May of 2011 he then transferred to the Toronto Police Marine Unit after successfully completing the COXSWAIN course. John spent over 7 years at the Marine Unit before he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in the fall of 2018, which saw him spend two years as a road supervisor at 33 Division, and 6 months as a Detective. John then returned to the Marine Unit as a Sergeant in June of 2021 before his subsequent appointment to his current role.
Daphne Choi, Senior Analyst, Analytics and Innovation
Daphne Choi is a Senior Analyst in the Service’s Analytics and Innovation Unit, and is a passionate leader in various roles throughout the community. In her role, she leads the development of analytical products, leading analysis for Mental Health and Addictions projects for the Service. Daphne has been involved with developing the TPS Public Safety Data Portal, contributed to early stages of the Race-based Data Strategy, and provides regular support to the City of Toronto for topical subjects including Transit Safety, Alcohol in Parks, and Short-Term Rentals. She also sits on the Ontario Volleyball Association Board of Directors as the Vice President – Administration, and chairs the Governance and Ethics committees. Upon graduation from the University of Guelph and Seneca College, she joined Peel Regional Police in 2008, and later joined the Toronto Police Service in 2016.
Ivy Nanayakkara, Manager, Wellness Unit
Ivy Nanayakkara is the Manager of Wellness at the Toronto Police Service. Ivy has over 22 years of experience in the field of occupational health and safety and wellness. She has worked with many public and private organizations across Canada in the design, implementation and evaluation of employee health programs aimed at creating and sustaining healthy and productive work forces. Ivy has a strong interest and passion in including psychological health and safety into workplace health strategies. In her role at the Toronto Police Service, Ivy authored the Member Wellbeing Strategy and Framework, and has been actively modernizing the Service’s Wellness Unit, and Health, Safety and Wellbeing Programming for Members. Notably, Ivy was a key Service lead in the COVID-19 Pandemic Response, and championed a high-touch, Pandemic Support program for Members, which was highly successful, both in Member experience, and infection prevention and control. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Western Ontario, and a Psychological Health & Safety Certificate from York University.
Acting S/Supt Kelly Skinner
Kelly Skinner is an Acting Staff Superintendent with the Toronto Police Service and is in her 26th year of policing. Kelly is responsible for overseeing Field Services – Community Safety Command. Field Services encompasses Toronto Police Operations Centre, 911 - Communications Services, Traffic Services, Parking Enforcement, the Public Safety Response Team and the Community Partnerships & Engagement Unit. Prior to this role, Kelly led a number of uniform divisions, and was a Duty Senior Officer for the Toronto Police Operations Centre. With a wealth of Uniform Policing experience, Kelly developed an extensive background in various forms of investigation. Kelly’s dedication to fostering strong community relationships is evident through her involvement in the Service’s Police and Community Engagement Review (PACER) 2.0 committee, where Kelly co-chaired the Know Your Rights sub-committee, which developed the Service’s first “Know Your Rights” video and campaign. Kelly is also a long-time member of the Association of Black Law Enforcers (A.B.L.E) where she was a former Executive Board Member, and an A.B.L.E. 1996 Scholarship Award Recipient. Kelly also proudly serves as a Director with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Toronto. Kelly firmly believes in the importance of collaboration between law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve, which leads to increased trust and positive outcomes.
Objective and Terms of Reference
The main objective of the Mental Health and Addictions Advisory Panel (MHAAP) is to review the implementation of the Mental Health and Addictions Strategy and to provide ongoing advice to the Board with respect to this important work.
The terms of reference of the MHAAP are as follows:
- To review, provide advice and make recommendations to the Board on an annual basis, at a minimum, related to monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the Mental Health and Addictions Strategy, and other matters related to policy involving mental health and addictions issues, including but not limited to the areas of:
- Joint initiatives, partnerships, and collaborations such as the Mobile Crisis Intervention Team (MCIT) program, including enhancements and expansion.
- The training and education of Service members in the area of mental health and addictions.
- The use of weapons, tools and equipment, such as Conducted Energy Weapons (CEWs).
- Data collection and analysis, including the collection, sharing and release of information related to mental health and addictions.
- Mechanisms related to accountability and oversight.
Recent Board Recommendations regarding MHAAP
The Board, at its meeting of August 18, 2020, approved 81 recommendations, putting into place a roadmap for comprehensive policing reform. These significant recommendations include building new community safety response models, initiatives to address systemic racism and concrete steps to improve trust with our communities. They followed robust public engagement that occurred over the months of June, July and into August 2020, following thousands of messages that the Board received from members of the public on police reform, accountability, and community safety priorities.
As part of these recommendations, the following was approved:
Make MHAAP permanent and require MHAAP to:
- review its terms of reference in consultation with the Board at least every 3 years or when otherwise required;
- review its membership at least every 3 years or when otherwise required;
- meet on a quarterly basis, at a minimum;
- meet with ARAP annually; and
- share its minutes with ARAP and convene a joint meeting when there are issues of mutual interest and significance.
Mental Health and Addictions Strategy
As recommended by MHAAP, the Service has developed a Mental Health Strategy.
The Strategy recognizes the significant priority the Board and Service place on responding to individuals who appear to be experiencing mental health and/or addictions issues, both in the community, and within our organization. It also creates a ‘roadmap’ to developing and implementing effective, comprehensive, compassionate and respectful responses to these complex issues.
The Strategy outlines the following eight key areas of commitment:
- Preserving Life
- Cultural Competence, Equity, and Anti-racism
- Stigma-free Environment
- Continuous Learning
- Advocacy and Partnerships
- Transparency, Accountability, Oversight, and Reporting
For each area, the Strategy includes a set of Initial Action Items that will assist the Service in fulfilling its commitment. The Service will be evaluating the progress of the implementation of this Strategy and will work to address additional action items that follow.
To help inform the public and stakeholders of progress achieved in relation to each action item, details relating to each action item are reported in a publicly available dashboard.
The dashboard provides the status for each action item and other pertinent information including the lead unit(s), progress details, the area of commitment, and other relevant links. This dashboard will be updated on an annual basis.
The Toronto Police Service also provides access to annual statistics on Persons in Crisis Calls for Service and Mental Health Act Apprehensions.
Please note the report consists of several pages. Navigate through the pages in the report using the arrows located at the bottom center of the report.
- Lisa Kostakis, BSW, RSW – Toronto Police Services Vice Chair, MHAAP Board Co-Chair