Police Board to hold Virtual Meeting on December 15, 2020
TORONTO: The next scheduled meeting of the Toronto Police Services Board will take place on December 15, 2020 at 9:00AM.
Given the current COVID-19 pandemic, and to protect the health and wellbeing of all involved while adhering to provincial emergency orders, this Board Meeting will proceed as a virtual meeting. Members of the public and media are welcome and encouraged to attend the meeting through our livestream at https://youtu.be/pKAkNc7lgk0.
The agenda is available on the Board’s website at: https://tpsb.ca/meetings/meetings-past.
Items of Interest at this virtual Board meeting include:
UPDATE ON SERVICE’S MENTAL HEALTH AND ADDICTIONS STRATEGY
The Board will consider a report from the Chief containing an update regarding the Service’s Mental Health and Addictions Strategy. As the report notes, the Strategy recognizes the significant priority we must place on responding to individuals who appear to be experiencing mental health and 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 includes a set of initial action items focused on the goal of achieving the outcomes outlined in the Strategy, under the following categories: Our Commitment to Preserving Life; Our Commitment to Leadership; Our Commitment to Equity/Anti-Racism; Our Commitment to a Stigma-Free Environment; Our Commitment to Continuous Learning; Our Commitment to Advocacy & Partnership; Our Commitment to Evaluation; and Our Commitment to Transparency, Accountability and Reporting. This report provides an update on the progress made in implementing each of the Action Items detailed in the Strategy.
TORONTO POLICE SERVICE WELL-BEING STRATEGY
The Board will hear a presentation on the Toronto Police Service’s Well-Being Strategy. The Strategy reflects a modern approach to wellness which includes adopting a “whole person mindset” that puts Members and all their diverse needs at the centre, making expanded and enhanced offerings easier to access and promoting individual choice and self-care. The Strategy outlines recommendations and a five-year action plan to realize key goals in improving the Service’s health and productivity. It is focused on the following themes: Confidence, Trust and Access, Health Promotion & Prevention, an Ecosystem of Care and Support, and Culture and Behavior.
STATUS OF IMPLEMENTATION OF RACE-BASED DATA COLLECTION, ANALYSIS AND REPORTING POLICY AND GAP ANALYSIS
The Board will consider a report from the Chief regarding the implementation status of the Board’s Race-Based Data Collection, Analysis and Reporting Policy and an analysis of gaps when considered alongside the recommendations developed by the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC). As the report notes, the Service’s implementation is on track with the timelines as set out in the Policy. As of January 1, 2020, the Service began collecting race-based data in all Use-of-Force Reports, and in addition, the Service went beyond this by including the collection of this data to enable analyses of strip searches (“level three” searches). The report notes that the Service is now preparing to start collecting race-based data in other interactions that Service Members have with the public by January 1, 2021. The report also includes an assessment of the Policy and the race-based data collection strategy through the lens of the OHRC’s deputation, as well as the relevant recommendations and feedback from the Anti-Racism Directorate. The report emphasizes that critical to the success of the Strategy are meaningful and ongoing engagements with key stakeholders.
USE OF CONDUCTED ENERGY WEAPONS (CEWs)
The Board will consider a report from the Chief on the use of Conducted Energy Weapons (CEWs) from the period of May 1 to August 31, 2020. The information contained in the report is based on CEW reports that have been received and reviewed by the Use of Force Analyst, and includes data in a number of areas, including types of use, use by Division, types of use in persons in crisis, subject behaviour and subject description. The report also includes information about any unintentional discharges of CEWs that occurred during spark testing at proving stations, as well as a discussion about any over-reliance or misuse of CEWs, and the steps taken to remedy such use, along with details regarding community consultation and the de-escalation training provided to officers. The report advises that CEWs were used by Service Members 209 times in the reporting period, of which 72% were demonstrated force presence (simply displaying the CEW, without activating it). This compares with 145,041 calls for service attended during the reporting period, of which 17,703 were violent calls for service. As the report notes, the data, and, in particular, the high percentage of demonstrated force presence, is a strong indication that officers are using good judgement under difficult circumstances, making appropriate decisions to use only the force necessary to resolve tense and dangerous situations.
As with all meetings, a recording of this meeting will be posted and archived to the Toronto Police Service YouTube account at https://www.youtube.com/TorontoPolice for members of the public to access later at their convenience.
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.