Toronto Police Services Board Approves Decision-Making Mechanism and Information-Sharing Protocol at Special Board Meeting
This Special Board Meeting was conducted as a tele-meeting, with Board Members joining by telephone, and members of the public and media calling in to join the tele-meeting. This was the first time the Board has conducted this type of ‘virtual’ meeting, and the participation of the public was appreciated.
An audio recording of this meeting has been posted and archived to the Toronto Police Service YouTube account and can be listened to at: https://youtu.be/ikhZs48rzy4 for members of the public to access at their convenience.
The Board recognizes that we are in the midst of an unprecedented public health emergency at this time. In approving the report from Executive Director Ryan Teschner, the Board affirmed its commitment to ensuring the continuity of adequate and effective policing services. As Mr. Teschner states, “the recommendations approved at today’s meeting provide reassurance to the community that the Board remains actively engaged in its civilian governance and oversight roles.”
Today, as permitted under the Police Services Act, the Board approved the delegation of specific authority to the Chair and Vice Chair to ensure that the Board can be immediately responsive to rapidly evolving and urgent circumstances that may require decisions to be made that relate to the adequacy and effectiveness of policing in Toronto. This delegation includes parameters to ensure the exercise of authority is limited to only what may be operationally required in the circumstances, and accountabilities to maximize the transparency of decision-making. To ensure there is accountability to the entire Board and to the public for the exercise of any delegated authority, there is a requirement for reporting to the Board and the public on any exercise of these delegated powers.
The report approved today also formalizes an information-sharing protocol between the Service and the Board, requiring the ongoing exchange of information relevant to Board decision-making during critical events. This will ensure that the Board’s expectations about the type of information it should receive are clear, and that it is provided with the information required to fulfil its statutory responsibilities, including setting the priorities and objectives for the Toronto Police Service and creating effective policies that guide the provision of policing in Toronto.
Chair Jim Hart emphasized that “as we all continue to navigate through this rapidly evolving and dynamic situation, members of the public should have the utmost confidence that both the Toronto Police Service and the Toronto Police Services Board remain focused on the public safety of our city.”
The Toronto Police Services Board is the civilian body responsible for governing the Toronto Police Service. The Board is responsible for ensuring the provision of adequate and effective police services in the City of Toronto, setting priorities and objectives for the Toronto Police Service, approving the annual police budget and selecting the Chief of Police.
Contact: Sandy Murray