11 2 3 POLICE COMPLAINTS REVIEW 4 5 6 7 ******************** 8 9 10 BEFORE: THE HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE 11 12 13 14 15 16 Held at: Ottawa City Hall 17 Ottawa, Ontario 18 19 20 ******************** 21 22 23 October 18th, 2004 24 25
21 --- Upon commencing at 6:33 p.m. 2 3 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Bonsoir, good 4 evening. Thank you for coming tonight to the public 5 meeting regarding Ontario system of dealing with public 6 complaints regarding Police conduct. 7 Mon nom est Nathalie Des Rosiers and I am 8 the former president of the Law Commission of Canada and 9 now I'm the Dean in the Faculty of Law at Ottawa 10 University. 11 I'm here tonight to be the moderator. I'm 12 delighted to have been asked to do this task by Mr. 13 LeSage. 14 So I -- first let me tell you that the -- 15 you are obviously -- know that this is a meeting that you 16 can take some listening device for -- if you don't 17 understand English or French, you can take a translating 18 device that are available just beside the door. 19 So, tonight we are really happy to have 20 with us Mr. Patrick LeSage who was asked in June by the 21 Attorney General to review the current system of dealing 22 with public complaints regarding Police conduct. 23 Monsieur Le Sage, as you probably know, is 24 the former Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Ontario 25 and he has a long -- twenty-eight (28) years' career on
31 the bench and he has presided, as you probably remember, 2 some of the most publicized and complex cases in Canada. 3 Prior to becoming a Judge, Monsieur LeSage 4 began his career as a Crown Attorney in the Ontario 5 Ministry of the Attorney General and he rose pretty 6 quickly to the position of Director of Crown Attorneys 7 for Ontario. 8 In 1975 he was appointed to the County and 9 District Court. In 1983 he became Judge en Chef Associe 10 of that Court. 11 In 1994 he became the Associate Chief 12 Justice and then in 1996 the Chief Justice of what is now 13 the Superior Court of Ontario and he held that position 14 until September 2002 when he became the senior resident 15 at Massey College, University of Toronto. 16 Monsieur LeSage was awarded an honorary 17 LLD from the University of Windsor and from Laurentian 18 University. 19 Earlier this year he joined the law firm 20 of Gowlings and works in the firm's advocacy department. 21 So Monsieur LeSage, tonight, will first 22 provide some introductory comment as to why we're here 23 tonight; what is the purpose of this meeting and -- and 24 what he has done since he was appointed last June. 25 Monsieur LeSage ...?
41 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Thank you, 2 Dean Des Rosiers. Good evening, welcome, bonsoir 3 bienvenue. It is a pleasure to be here in Ottawa. The 4 last time I was in this chamber is when I was presiding 5 over the swearing in of, I think, five (5) new Judges to 6 the Unified Family Court in Ottawa in 1999. 7 It's a wonderful room, and I am delighted 8 to see that you have taken the time to come out this 9 evening to meet with us. 10 I was asked by the Attorney General, as 11 Dean Des Rosiers has indicated, to review the current 12 system of dealing with public complaints regarding Police 13 conduct, and to advise on the development of a model of 14 resolving public complaints, to ensure that the system is 15 fair, effective and transparent. 16 I was given that task in mid June of this 17 year. Since then, I have spoken to perhaps about a 18 hundred and twenty (120), a hundred and thirty (130) 19 groups and individuals from across the Province, either 20 through informal meetings, or by telephone to discuss the 21 system as it now exists, and the system as it in some 22 cases, as it exists in other jurisdictions, both in North 23 -- in Canada, in North America, and elsewhere in the 24 world. 25 I have met informally with groups and
51 individuals in Toronto, Kingston, here in Ottawa, Sault 2 St. Marie, Thunder Bay, Kenora, Windsor, Hamilton, London 3 and Ohsweken, which is the Six Nations Reserve near 4 Brantford. 5 Many of the groups and individuals I have 6 met with have also provided me with written submissions. 7 In addition, written submissions have been received from 8 numerous groups and individuals who did not have an 9 opportunity to meet or speak with me. 10 Submissions were received from 11 individuals, and a wide spectrum of groups, including 12 Police groups, community groups, legal groups, First 13 Nations communities. 14 The original mid August deadline for 15 receiving submissions, was set early in the review 16 process, but it became apparent to me after the many 17 meetings I held in June and July, that the deadline 18 needed to be extended, and it was subsequently extended 19 until the end of September. 20 I am continuing to review these 21 submissions, and we have received hundreds of them. 22 The submissions that I have received have 23 touched upon virtually every aspect of the current 24 complaint system. Some of the issues that have been 25 raised include, and I'll just touch on some of the issues
61 that have been raised, in many cases, by a number of 2 different groups. 3 First of all, who should be able to make 4 the complaint? Where should a complainant go to make the 5 complaint? What support or assistance should be 6 available to complainants? The structure of an informal 7 resolution process, the limitation period for the filing 8 of complaints. Who should be responsible for the 9 investigation of complaints, and if it is not the Police, 10 what qualifications should these investigators have? 11 Whether employees of a Police service, other than Police 12 officers, such as special Constables or civilian 13 employees, should be governed by the complaint system. 14 The role to be played by the Police 15 Service Boards in the complaint system. The retention of 16 records of complaints. The standard that should be met 17 before a hearing is directed. The standard of proof to 18 be used at a hearing. Who should be presiding at a 19 hearing, what would be an appropriate appeal mechanism? 20 Appropriate penalties, and audits of the complaint system 21 and many have said, of Police Services. 22 But bear in mind, what I'm dealing with 23 are public complaints about the Police services. 24 I undertook and have every expectation 25 too, that I will have my report to the Attorney General
71 completed by the end of this year. 2 However, before I prepare my report, 3 notwithstanding all the submissions I have received and 4 the meetings I have held, we are holding a number of 5 public meetings so that members of the public are able to 6 understand some of the issues and hear the views of some 7 of those that I have met with this summer. 8 I also want to have those that I have met 9 with to hear others and what they might have to say. 10 After these meetings, which will be in Toronto, if I 11 haven't already said that, in Toronto, Windsor, and 12 Ottawa. This is the first one and the next one is in 13 Windsor and the last one will be in Toronto. But after I 14 have had those meetings, I still will receive any written 15 submissions that people wish to make, up until November 16 12th. But that has to be the absolute deadline. 17 And if you access our website, you will 18 see how you can forward on submissions to us. 19 My report will then be based on what I 20 have learned from the meetings that I have had with these 21 various groups, these public meetings, tonight and in 22 Windsor and in Toronto and any comments that I will 23 receive prior to November 12th. 24 Before we begin hearing from you this 25 evening, I would like to turn this back to Dean Des
81 Rosiers who will provide you with some information 2 regarding how this meeting will progress this evening. 3 And we hope that it will unfold in an 4 orderly fashion. And people have spoken to us, have 5 contacted us, and have asked for the opportunity to make 6 submissions and we will call upon those persons to make 7 submissions. 8 But the Dean will explain it in more 9 detail. Thank you again so much for attending. 10 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you. 11 So as was explained, the process is to give Monsieur 12 LeSage some suggestions, some suggestions for improvement 13 on the system. So it is forward looking suggestions that 14 he's looking for and just before I forget, if there is a 15 list of people who have are -- have been -- have asked to 16 make submissions and as it was advertised on the website, 17 we would -- the list is up there. 18 We will ask them to make their 19 submissions. They have five (5) minutes and I will be 20 very strict because it's very important that everybody 21 gets a chance to express themself. And if we have 22 sometimes people that did not apply, then we will see 23 whether we have a little bit of time to hear from you. 24 But if you don't get to speak tonight, if 25 you go on the Ontario Police Complaints Review, if you
91 type that in, then you get to the website very easily and 2 then you can e-mail your issues, your suggestions for 3 change to the review process and you know you have until 4 November 12th to do that. 5 So it's very easy. I've tried it this 6 afternoon and it works, so if you go on Ontario Police 7 Complaints Review, you'll get to the website and you can 8 make your -- your submissions there as well. 9 So the process was that people have to 10 make their presentation prior to tonight and the -- the 11 list that is posted, we'll just go through them, one (1) 12 at a time. I'll invite them to address you in turn. 13 We'll probably take a break at -- no later 14 than 7:45 to allow us to stretch our legs a little bit 15 and come back at eight o'clock and we have to finish by 16 nine o'clock. 17 So all along, I'll ask you obviously, to 18 keep your remarks short and, if you can't finish, as I 19 said, you can always use the e-mail to complete your 20 thought processes. 21 Alors, pour commencer, vitement, -- so to 22 start of course you can speak in the language of your 23 choice. Therefore if you want to use the -- the 24 opportunity to speak French or English, it's up to you. 25 It's your choice.
101 So now I will invite the first speaker 2 from the Ottawa and District Labour Council. 3 Yes, one (1) of -- you can sit on one (1) 4 of these two (2), it's fine. I'll ask you actually -- 5 we'll -- these three (3) places are the seats that we've 6 reserved for the -- for the presenters. 7 Monsieur McKenny...? 8 MR. SEAN MCKENNY: Okay, I thank you. I 9 would first like to express my appreciation to you, Mr. 10 LeSage, for the opportunity to provide comment as it 11 relates to the Police complaints review. 12 The Ottawa and District Labour Council 13 represents approximately ninety (90) local area unions 14 comprised of over thirty-five thousand (35,000) workers 15 in Ottawa. 16 And my comment is very direct. What's in 17 place today is not only not working, but it has also 18 caused incredible strain on communities across this 19 province, and I'll cover this a little later. 20 Workers in this community have a fairly 21 good rapport with the Ottawa Police. It's not perfect 22 and it's been built upon through a number of years of 23 hard work on both sides. We talk, we don't always agree, 24 but we talk and we try to understand the other's 25 perspective as it might relate to a picket line, a
111 demonstration, or rally, what have you. 2 If there's a level of understanding then 3 there is a possibility of resolve. No understanding, no 4 level of trust, then there is no resolve. That's common 5 sense and quite simplistic. 6 I commend Chief Bevan and the Ottawa 7 Police for attempting to integrate more into the 8 community. They're working hard at it and in some 9 instances, there is success. At the same time, the 10 integration in other instances, takes many years. 11 There exists in Ottawa, and I can only 12 speak from Ottawa. I don't know Toronto, I don't know 13 other communities, only from what I read. I can only 14 speak from experience for Ottawa and I know that in 15 Ottawa, for the most part, there exists a lack of trust. 16 It's difficult in regards to the Police 17 review process if there is a lack of trust. And there is 18 a lack of trust. 19 I'm going to go to some of the questions 20 that you posed at the start, based on some of the input 21 that has been provided already. And I'll try and answer 22 some of those in an attempt to help you. 23 Again, speaking from an Ottawa perspective 24 and the perspective of a -- of a worker who's trying to 25 take a look at all the different sides.
121 Who should be able to make a complaint? 2 The difficulty is with what's existing now, if there is 3 an individual who doesn't have, let's use the term 4 "wherewithal" to file that complaint on their own behalf. 5 There has to be a mechanism put in place in order to do 6 that. 7 It doesn't make a lot of sense to only 8 have the individual who something has happened to, be the 9 individual that makes a complaint. There is a group of 10 people that's being left out of the equation. 11 Where should a complainant go to make a 12 complaint? Not the Police station. There doesn't exist 13 a level of trust. It makes no sense then, that that 14 individual go to the Police station in order to file a 15 complaint. 16 What support or assistance should be 17 available to complainants? All the support in the world. 18 It shouldn't be a deterrent, if the -- the support 19 mechanisms are not there. It can't be a deterrent so 20 there has to be something there in order to make sure 21 that people are provided an opportunity to initiate a 22 complaint. 23 The structure of an informal resolution 24 process. Again, the Police cannot be a part of this 25 process. I want to make something really clear. It's
131 not the Police per se, but rather the general public's 2 perception and I know, Mr. LeSage, that you've heard in a 3 number of instances that there is that level of trust. 4 It's interesting because as children, 5 we're taught that if something happens to us, that we go 6 to a Police Officer. They're the ones that are going to 7 protect us. And I agree with that. 8 Something happens and later on in life 9 that's not always the -- the position that we take. I 10 don't know what the answer is for that, but I know that 11 that's a fact. 12 The limitation period for the filing of 13 complaints? It can't be any different than any other 14 place in law. You have child abuse cases that come out 15 years and years after. It can be no different for the 16 complaints process in respect of the Police. 17 Who should be responsible for the 18 investigation of complaints, and if it's not the Police, 19 what qualifications should these investigators have? The 20 -- the investigation have to have the qualifications of a 21 Police Officer. Our Police Officers have incredible 22 experience when it comes to investigation. 23 Again, I don't have the answer, but I know 24 that it can't be solely the Police. There have to be 25 others involved with that process.
141 The role of the Police Services Board in 2 the complaints system? I don't have an answer for that. 3 I think there is one, but again, I don't have the 4 specific answer. 5 The retention of -- of records of 6 complaints. Again, the difficulty here is the individual 7 Police Officer. They're people, too. They're 8 individuals, they need protection whether from their -- 9 from their association or otherwise. 10 They do need that protection so it doesn't 11 seem fair to me if that record is there, if in fact, 12 there was something where the Officer wasn't found 13 guilty, that it remains on his file. And there has to be 14 a process that is able to provide assurances to that 15 Officer that he should, or she should, be allowed to do 16 the job. 17 I see you looking at your watch. 18 Who should be presiding at a Hearing? And 19 again, those individuals who are directly affected with 20 the -- with the complaint, whoever they may be, inclusive 21 of witnesses. 22 The appropriate appeal mechanism. The 23 appeal mechanism has got to -- there's appeal mechanism 24 in place now, some have suggested it doesn't work. 25 Again, what becomes important here is that there's a
151 level of trust that's reestablished. 2 I'm not saying that that level of trust 3 can't be established, I think it can be and, quite 4 frankly, I think the Police investigating Police is about 5 twenty (20) to thirty (30) years too early. 6 I think that twenty (20) years from now, 7 when we're a different society, and we will be, that then 8 is the opportunity for Police to be able to investigate 9 Police with the trust and the respect of the general 10 public. 11 And you're nodding, which means I'm done, 12 right? Okay. That -- you know that's fine and I was -- 13 I was -- 14 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: If you have a 15 wrap-up...? 16 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: One (1) 17 minute. Can you make it one (1) minute. 18 MR. SEAN MCKENNY: Yeah, no, we can do 19 that. I want to -- again, the difficulty and the biggest 20 point that I need to get across to you, not that it 21 hasn't already, there exists a lack of trust. The Police 22 are trying, there's no question about that. 23 The Police cannot be held accountable to 24 too large a degree in most situations. It's not working, 25 and they have to reestablish the trust and they're not
161 re-establishing the trust through the present system that 2 we have now. 3 There was a group of people behind me just 4 a few short weeks ago and Officer Larry Hill was up here, 5 and it was around homelessness and -- and he mentioned 6 that all those that had a problem could file a complaint 7 against the Police. 8 And everybody in this room snickered, 9 because they know that there exists again, that lack of 10 trust. 11 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you. 12 From the Ottawa Police Services, Mr. Herb 13 Kreling. 14 MR. HERB KRELING: Good evening and I 15 would like to share, as well, Mr. LeSage, in our thank 16 you to you for coming this evening and for availing 17 yourself of an opportunity to meet with residents of our 18 community to hear from them first hand, with respect to 19 this very important issue that you have taken on the task 20 of, and that is, to comment and to bring a report, 21 reviewing the public complaints process, respecting 22 Police services in our province. 23 And for myself and our community, thank 24 you for -- for coming here and spending that time with 25 us.
171 I wanted to take a few minutes this 2 evening, Mr. LeSage, and to reiterate points that we had 3 an opportunity to discuss previously between yourself and 4 the Ottawa Police Services Board. 5 The Board and myself felt it appropriate 6 that we also avail ourselves of this forum because we 7 certainly agree, as do you, that the process should be 8 open, transparent -- and transparent. And so I'm taking 9 this opportunity to reiterate those -- those points that 10 we had a previous opportunity to discuss. 11 And that was the first point, that we -- 12 we do definitely agree that the system must be fair, it 13 must be transparent and it must be affordable. 14 If there are, and I'm sure you appreciate, 15 modifications that the Province might introduce that 16 would impose greater costs on municipalities, given the 17 financial -- financial situation that Ottawa and other 18 municipalities across the province find themselves in, it 19 will be difficult for municipalities to accommodate 20 increased costs in the public complaints process. 21 It is also our belief that modifications 22 should not be made solely to address problems that might 23 have been encountered or continue to be encountered in 24 other communities. 25 One (1) size does not necessarily fit all
181 in a province the size of Canada -- or, I'm sorry, 2 Ontario, and certainly -- and certainly even in Ottawa we 3 see, from day to day, that one (1) size does not fit all. 4 We believe that mediation opportunities 5 should be first and foremost. It is less -- it is less 6 formal. It also allows the complainant to play an active 7 role in mediation and to participate in the process in 8 which the complainant would see results. 9 We do oppose the allowing of third party 10 complaints that would clog the system. We believe that 11 the system today, which provides an opportunity for 12 individuals who believe that they have been wronged by an 13 activity or an action of a Police Officer, that 14 individual has the right to file a public complaint and 15 is afforded due process. 16 But to permit third party complaints, 17 especially in a community like Ottawa, where we are -- we 18 host numerous -- numerous demonstrations and other types 19 of activities during the course of a year, it would be 20 difficult to establish or to permit third party 21 complaints. 22 We believe that that would certainly pose 23 a problem for the system. 24 Prior to the current system, in Ontario we 25 did have an independent province-wide public complaints
191 commission. That commission and that organization and 2 that system failed. It failed because it was under- 3 resources, both financially and human resources wise. 4 And the result was that the processing 5 times were unacceptably long and it was difficult to 6 weave your way through the system. 7 We would suggest that if there are changes 8 to the current model that we need to be sure that it is 9 adequately staffed and financed. And we would suggest 10 that the Province, if it makes these changes, the 11 Province must accept its responsibility to adequately 12 finance and staff the system properly. 13 In response to the suggestion that there 14 should be a civilian oversight and participation of the 15 public at the front end of the process to provide 16 transparency, we would suggest that these individuals be 17 properly trained and resources, otherwise that will not 18 work. 19 It is unfair to the complainant and it is 20 equally unfair to the Police Officer that a situation be 21 investigated by someone or somebody that does not have 22 the same type of investigative skills and standards that 23 our Police officers themselves have. 24 Mr. LeSage, that brings me to conclusion 25 of my -- my points. Again, thank you on behalf of the
201 community for being with us this evening. 2 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you, 3 Mr. Kreling. 4 Councillor Jacques Legendre of the City of 5 Ottawa. 6 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Bonsoir. 7 Honourable Patrick LeSage -- 8 Honourable Judge LeSage -- I am pleased 9 you have decided to hear delegations on this important 10 topic in Ottawa and grateful for this opportunity to 11 offer my suggestions. 12 Jai l'intention d'offrir cette 13 presentation en Francais -- I will make my presentation 14 in French and in English. 15 The complaints system has suffered a 16 credibility and transparency problem ever since the 17 Police Act was changed in 1997. The complaint system is 18 at the heart of public confidence in Police and it's also 19 important for the Police, themselves, because they rely 20 on ready co-operation from the public in performing their 21 job. 22 The following suggestions would go a long 23 way, in my view, to enhancing that confidence. The 24 biggest weakness in the current system that complainants 25 must complain to and accept that their complaints --
211 complaints will be examined by the very organization 2 about which they are complaining must be changed. 3 Complaints administrations should be taken 4 from the Chief's responsibility and made a responsibility 5 of the local Police services Board. 6 Complaints concerning solving complaints 7 should be made at the local Board. If the decision of 8 the local Board is not acceptable, a second appeal could 9 be sent to the Commission at CCOPS in Ontario. 10 It is now complicated because complaints 11 must be classed as regarding either: 12 a) The policies or services provided 13 by the Police force, or 14 b) Officer conduct. 15 This leads to different appeal streams, 16 serves no useful purpose, and can lead to confusion for 17 everyone. Unnecessary and distracting problems arise 18 when one (1) incident results in complaints falling into 19 both categories or when complaints are worded in such a 20 way that causes incorrect classification. 21 Legislation should authorize complaints to 22 the local Commission. Presently, they have to be made to 23 the Chief of Police. There is another solution, but then 24 it's with CCOPS and not with the local Commission. The 25 acknowledgement of a complaint at a local meeting could
221 be less dramatic when situations are complicated, well 2 managed, then, in that case, it won't compromise the role 3 of the Commission while studying complaints. 4 Boards need a monitoring tool if they are 5 to set appropriate local policies with respect to 6 complaints resolution or policies intended to possibly 7 avoiding the type of complaint in the first instance. 8 The Act should require Boards to receive brief summaries 9 of all complaints and the resolution. Such reports 10 should be in the public domain. 11 Privacy concerns may be addressed by 12 removing individual identifiers. It is important that 13 the nature of the complaint and its disposition be clear. 14 Policies are not created in a vacuum, but rather proceed 15 from the specific to the general. 16 We should make sure that the members of 17 the Board really understand their basic role of 18 monitoring. Training is far from being sufficient. We 19 don't insist enough on the importance of maintaining a 20 certain distance between the Board and the Police 21 Services to preserve the independence of the Commission. 22 None of these changes require the expenditure of 23 additional monies. 24 Prior to 1997, Ontario was considered a 25 world leader in the matter of dealing with Police
231 complaints. Reinstating the Provincial Office of Police 2 Complaints Commissioner could reclaim that leadership 3 position. Its major failing, as has already been said, 4 was that complaints took too long to resolve. Correcting 5 this would require more resources than are currently 6 provided and probably more resources than was previously 7 allocated. I have little expectation that this would 8 find favour within the current political climate. 9 The six (6) modifications of the Police 10 Act suggested above could have almost the same result as 11 restoring the Complaints Commissioner, yet at no 12 additional cost or overhead. They would immeasurably 13 increase the credibility of the complaint system over the 14 current situation and enhance the role of local Police 15 Service Boards. 16 During the years I was at the Board, this 17 was most profitable for me because I did have an order to 18 stabilize our society, my sustained interest comes from 19 the consideration I have for Police persons, men and 20 women, who have one (1) of the most difficult role in our 21 modern society. In Canada we have excellent people in 22 charge of the legislation. It would be unfortunate to do 23 nothing instead of taking the proper means to solve the 24 problems facing. 25 Please allow me to finish in English, that
241 we are fortunate in this country to have a high standard 2 of excellence amongst our law enforcement officials. It 3 would be unfortunate if that led us to -- into 4 complacency. 5 Thank you very much for your kind 6 attention. 7 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: I wanted to 8 ask you a question, because we did speak on the 9 telephone -- 10 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Yes. 11 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: -- some 12 considerable time ago, and then I received your written 13 submission. I was wondering how many do you think of 14 your fellow councillors would be of the view that the 15 Board should be the recipient and the one who deals with 16 the complaints? 17 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: I haven't 18 canvassed them. And are you speaking of the councillor 19 that are -- the councillors that are currently members of 20 the Board or -- 21 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: No. No. 22 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: -- all the 23 Council? 24 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: At large. 25 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: At large.
251 I'd be pleased to conduct an informal survey on your 2 behalf -- 3 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Okay. 4 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: -- if you 5 would like. 6 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: I would 7 appreciate -- 8 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: I did not 9 do so. Sorry? 10 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Until November 11 12th. 12 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Indeed. Of 13 course. I -- I've noted it. I've noted your deadline. 14 By the way, I want to congratulate you on your -- on your 15 website. It's -- provides -- it was very useful to me, 16 and I appreciated it. 17 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Thank you. 18 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Excellent. 19 But I'd certainly -- I'm not sure of the sense of your 20 direction though in that question. 21 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Well -- 22 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Because the 23 Council is not really that engaged with the Police Board. 24 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Hmm hmm. 25 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: So could I
261 have some additional -- 2 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Well, I 3 guess, since the members of the Council are on the Board 4 and I was wondering, and it really is, I believe, 5 although I'm not sure, that the expenses of the Board are 6 paid by -- 7 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Oh yes, at 8 the very least. 9 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: -- yes, the 10 municipality. 11 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Yes. 12 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: So that's 13 what I was wondering. I was thinking of, really, from an 14 expense point of view -- 15 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Ah. 16 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: -- as to what 17 the Council, I suppose, might think about it. 18 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Yes, but I 19 -- okay, I will -- I will canvass them. But I stress 20 that they -- what I'm primarily suggesting, Justice 21 LeSage -- 22 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Yes. 23 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: -- is a 24 change in reporting relationship. 25 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Yes.
271 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: That change 2 wouldn't add a cent -- 3 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Right. 4 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: -- to the 5 cost of the operation. 6 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Oh, you don't 7 think it would? 8 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: I don't 9 think it would -- 10 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Okay. All 11 right. 12 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Because the 13 current -- 14 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Well, that -- 15 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: internal 16 affairs unit, the Professional Standards Unit, would be 17 the agency, in my view, that would undertake this, except 18 they would no longer report to the Chief, they would 19 report to the Board. 20 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Hmm hmm. I 21 just assumed that it would enlarge very significantly the 22 work of the Board. But it may not. 23 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Oh, for the 24 Board members -- 25 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Yes.
281 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: -- yes, it 2 would be additional work. But, frankly, I think that 3 would be a plus. 4 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Hmm hmm. 5 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: That's my 6 view. I've served on the Board six (6) years. I may not 7 have unanimity on the part of current or past Board 8 members on that, but I think there is additional time 9 there. That they could get their teeth into such a 10 thing, I think would be useful. 11 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Okay. Thank 12 you. 13 COUNCILLOR JACQUES LEGENDRE: Thank you. 14 MS. NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Merci beaucoup, 15 Monsieur Legendre. 16 Now, Mr. Miller, Bruce Miller from the 17 Police Association of Ontario. 18 MR. BRUCE MILLER: Good evening, Mr. 19 LeSage. Bonsoir, Nathalie. 20 My name is Bruce Miller and I'm the chief 21 administrative Officer for the Police Association of 22 Ontario. I was also a frontline Police Officer for over 23 twenty (20) years before taking down my current 24 responsibilities. 25 The Police Association, or PAO, is a
291 professional organization representing over twenty-one 2 thousand (21,000) Police and civilian members from sixty- 3 three (63) Police associations across the province, 4 including the Ottawa Police Association. 5 The PAO is committed to promoting the 6 interest of frontline Police personnel, to uphold in the 7 honour of the Police profession and to elevating the 8 standards of Ontario's Police Service. We appreciate the 9 opportunity to participate this evening. 10 As you know, we have already submitted a 11 brief to you that addresses, hmm hmm, a number of 12 specific issues and recommendations for change. We will 13 limit tonight's presentation on some general 14 observations, due to the time constraints. 15 We believe that Ontario already has a 16 strong and vigorous system of civilian oversight. Our 17 system is based on the best practices available from 18 across the country and, we believe, serves the interest 19 of the policing community and the public. 20 The PAO has been an active participant in 21 the past reviews of civilian oversight. As an 22 association committed to excellence in policing, we 23 welcome the opportunity to participate in any process 24 that ensures that all Ontarians have faith in their 25 Police service and the system of civilian oversight.
301 The PAO believes that an effective and 2 transparent public complaint system must satisfy 3 reasonable members of both the public and the Police 4 communities. It must ensure access to the complaints 5 process for all Ontario citizens, provide fairness to all 6 parties, provide meaningful structured opportunities for 7 the informal resolution of complaints, and have as its 8 core goal remedial as opposed to punitive measures. 9 We believe the appropriate approach is to 10 strengthen and communicate the merits of our existing 11 system as contained in Part V of the Police Services Act. 12 Too often people generalize, simplify and distill the 13 issues to conclude that sweeping changes are necessary to 14 ensure the Police do not police themselves. 15 In our view public education and promotion 16 of what the current Act provides would go a long way 17 towards dispelling the myths surrounding Police 18 oversight. An accessible public complaints process must 19 be straightforward and easy to understand for both 20 complainants and Police officers. 21 It must allow all citizens to have access 22 to its provisions in an efficient and effective manner. 23 It should recognize the diversity of Ontario's citizens, 24 communities and Police resources. To promote access we 25 make the following recommendations.
311 Publicizing the rights of citizens to file 2 complaints through CCOPS, as well as through the local 3 Police service. Establishing an electronic or internet 4 base method of filing complaints. 5 And facilitate the participation of 6 members of linguistic and cultural minorities and 7 citizens with disabilities in a complaints process 8 through the establishment of liaison officers or advisors 9 to assist citizens to file complaints and to provide 10 guidance throughout the complaints process. 11 We share the government's goal of ensuring 12 that Ontario -- Ontario's oversight system respects the 13 rights and dignity of citizens who file complaints. The 14 witnesses who provide information and the officers about 15 who complaints are filed. 16 To that end serious complaints should be 17 dealt with in an effective manner and frivolous and 18 vexations complaints ought to be disposed of promptly. 19 The PAO believes that the primary goal of civilian 20 oversight ought to be the remediation of an officer's 21 conduct and the overall improvement of policing in a 22 general. 23 In recognition that officers face 24 significant consequences when a complaint is upheld, the 25 process must comply with the highest standards of natural
321 justice and procedural fairness. The PAO believes that 2 this review process will only succeed if all participants 3 have a strong and shared foundation. 4 We support meetings such as this as they 5 allow participants to have an opportunity to listen and 6 to learn from one another before the government takes 7 action. The PAO would strongly encourage further 8 consultations on these issues before your final 9 recommendations are submitted. 10 We would be pleased to meet with you to 11 discuss some of the issues and concerns that will be 12 raised in meetings such as this. We would also be 13 pleased to meet with other interested stakeholders in 14 joint meetings. We have a long history of working co- 15 operatively with government to improve policing in 16 Ontario. 17 We're proud of our past accomplishments. 18 We understand that policing is constantly in transition. 19 By responding to changing public expectations, we can 20 ensure that Ontario's Police services remain the envy of 21 other jurisdictions. 22 In closing, we would like to thank you for 23 the opportunity to appear here this evening and look 24 forward to continuing to work with you and others to 25 ensure a strong, effective and fair civilian oversight
331 system, thank you. 2 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Mr. Durber, 3 from the Ottawa Witness Group, please. 4 MR. PAUL DURBER: Thank you, Dean Des 5 Rosiers. My colleague, John Baglow will be joining me 6 tonight and has just given you our written comments. So 7 I will spare you a literal reading of them. 8 Other colleagues who have worked on this 9 are also here, Aileen Leo (phonetic) and -- and Maryann 10 McKinnon (phonetic). I just mention them. 11 The Ottawa Witness Group is a local social 12 justice group. We are very interested in freedom of 13 expression particularly during demonstrations which in 14 due course is needless to say brings us into a good deal 15 of observation of the relationship between Police and 16 citizens in those circumstances. 17 And we have a number of observations to 18 bring to you some of which we hope will be particularly 19 helpful and John is going to speak about the citizens 20 advocate notion. 21 We have become convinced, and I say with 22 regret, that the current Police complaints process is a 23 waste of time and resources. 24 The difficulties of seeing very, very 25 large numbers of complaints dismissed is one thing, but
341 we agree with Mr. McKinny, for example, who said earlier 2 and -- and Councillor Legendary that the great difficulty 3 is credibility and trust. 4 We have a number of suggestions to make to 5 repair what is, at the moment, a difficult relationship 6 and we would also suggest that the most difficult part of 7 this relationship is between those who are somewhat 8 marginalised, including the young, the homeless, the 9 disorganized or unorganized, and the figures of authority 10 in the Police who should, of course, be there to serve 11 and protect. 12 We believe, for example, that there are 13 difficulties with Police policy complaints, systemic 14 complaints. 15 The gentleman from the Police Association 16 speaks of improving the quality of policing we 17 wholeheartedly agree, although we would end up using 18 different methods, but we would certainly urge on you the 19 need for an effective way of dealing with policy and 20 systemic issues. 21 We would like to see whatever system you 22 recommend embody a number of values. And I'll go over 23 them quickly. I think we've spoken of them before. 24 First, we would like to see the process 25 handled in an independent way, that is not clearly the
351 same people who are the object of the complaint being, at 2 least, the front line. 3 We believe the system must be transparent. 4 We think that both of these qualities or values are 5 important to regain trust, which is at the root of what 6 should be a positive relationship between Police and the 7 community. 8 We also believe that there should be 9 effective redress. The gentleman from the Police 10 Association speaks of remedial action in terms of the 11 Police. We truly also believe that needs to be balanced 12 in terms of the individual as well as the policy. 13 We agree on easy access. That is 14 extremely important and to that end, we agree with Mr. 15 McKenny that third parties and groups who may indeed be 16 better organized, could be of great help in making this 17 an effective system. 18 And finally, as others speakers have 19 mentioned, we believe that the processing of complaints 20 should be timely. Delay has indeed, to this date, been a 21 major issue for us and we hardly need to tell you about 22 the effects of delay in such a kind of judicial area. 23 So I will now turn the microphone over to 24 John Baglow. 25 MR. JOHN BAGLOW: Thank you, and good
361 evening. We've already made a presentation to you and 2 you have that, and we thought that this evening for the 3 second part of this very brief presentation we would home 4 in on Recommendation 3 in the submission we gave to you 5 which is a proposal for an Office of the Citizen Advisor. 6 We recommended that it would provide 7 advice with respect to lodging complaints, guide citizens 8 through the complaints process, make alternate dispute 9 resolution available if requested by both parties, and 10 provide representation throughout to complainants. 11 There are three (3) specific points we 12 want to make at this point. 13 First, there are a number of models of 14 civilian review of complaints against Police all over the 15 world. But none that we're aware of has embodied this 16 particular feature. 17 Yet for any complaints process to be 18 publicly credible, it must be accessible, user-friendly 19 and efficient. It must compensate, also, for the power 20 imbalance between the citizen and the institution of the 21 Police service. 22 The Office of the Citizen Advisor is a 23 means of ensuring this. 24 A similar structure is already in place 25 for injured workers under a number of provincial and
371 territorial workers' compensation regimes. It's called 2 the Office of the Worker Advisor. 3 The Offices differ in their powers but 4 have in common the advocacy role for injured workers at 5 all steps of the workers' compensation process, including 6 appeals. 7 Workers' Compensation Boards have found 8 that such offices have been of considerable assistance in 9 the claims process with full disclosure and sound advice 10 actually reducing the number of appeals. 11 By the same token, the Office of the 12 Citizen Advisor would serve not only to represent the 13 interests of Complainants, but would, through a number of 14 measures including full disclosure, alternate dispute 15 resolution and the provision of informed advice to 16 Complainants, serve as a filter against unfounded 17 complaints. 18 And this connection should be noted that 19 the number of appeals against appointment in the Federal 20 Public Service dropped significantly when the disclosure 21 phase was introduce. Second -- and I'm going as fast as 22 I can. 23 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: I think it's 24 very hard for the transcribers if we go too fast. 25 MR. JOHN BAGLOW: All right. I have
381 only a couple more comments to -- 2 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: I know, I -- 3 I think we -- just finish your points -- 4 MR. JOHN BAGLOW: Okay. 5 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: -- I think 6 it's important. 7 MR. JOHN BAGLOW: Thank you very much. 8 Now, secondly, as we noted in our original submission we 9 envisage a two (2) steps complaints resolution process. 10 The first would be an internal hearing 11 within the Police Service in which the Complainant, 12 assisted by the Office of the Citizen Advisor could 13 appear to make argument and submit evidence. Prior to 14 the internal hearing, disclosure and alternate dispute 15 resolution could be built into the process and assisted 16 by the OCA. 17 The Ottawa Witness Group has no difficulty 18 with Police conducting their own internal investigation 19 so long as Complainants have access, with representation 20 if requested, to a full and fair hearing at which they 21 can present their case. 22 There is no mechanism at present for the - 23 - sorry -- If the complaint is not resolved to the 24 satisfaction of the Complainant, the second step would be 25 an external hearing before an independent third party
391 tribunal at the municipal level, and we've outlined in 2 our presentation earlier about that. 3 Third, the structure that we propose is to 4 be distinguished from the recommendation of the Toronto 5 Police Services Board in a number of respects. The 6 Toronto Board proposes a one (1) stop shopping model that 7 would eliminate the right of citizens to seek separate 8 redress for their complaint through the Civil Courts or 9 through the Ontario Human Rights Commission. 10 This reduces the avenues available for 11 citizen redress and we do not agree that such a 12 restriction is acceptable or justified. It does not 13 envisage a two (2) steps complaints procedure that, in 14 our view, would go some way to encourage the Police 15 Service itself to enforce sound internal management 16 guidelines and practices and it proposes that their new 17 independent Board would have an investigative arm. 18 Our view is that the appropriate mandate 19 of the independent tribunals that we are proposing is to 20 hear complaints, having full powers to summon witness, 21 compel testimony, issue subpoenas for documents and offer 22 redress and impose penalties where warranted. 23 We do not believe that an independent 24 investigative function would be particularly effective -- 25 hasn't proved to be elsewhere -- and it would be costly.
401 We believe that any resources available for this would be 2 better applied to the Office of the Citizen Advisor. 3 On behalf of the Ottawa Witness Group we 4 are pleased to add these further comments to our July 5 submission and we wish to thank you once again for 6 holding this public meeting. We wish you well in your 7 deliberations. 8 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: I think we 9 have the time to hear from Professor Kempa from the 10 University of Ottawa before our break. 11 PROFESSOR MICHAEL KEMPA: Thank you very 12 much for giving me the opportunity to revisit some of the 13 things we've spoken about before, after having refine 14 those thoughts a little bit further and listening to what 15 everybody else has had to say here and elsewhere. 16 As we have discussed before independence 17 can be built into three (3) stages of the complaints 18 review process. First, in the receipt; second, in 19 investigations; and third, through the adjudication or 20 deciding on disciplinary action stages of the review 21 process. 22 Now studies show us that two (2) things 23 happen as we make the system more independent across those 24 three (3) levels. Public confidence increases and it 25 becomes more expenses.
411 So the critical question I think facing us 2 is, how independent does the system have to be so that it 3 achieves its objectives of public confidence while not 4 alienating the public Police and certainly not eating up 5 all our policing resources to the detriment of our broader 6 policing needs. So on this area what does international 7 experience tell us? 8 As you know the gold standard in civilian 9 review of public Police conduct is the totally independent 10 Ombudsman office in operation in Northern Ireland. As we 11 have discussed before this model is very expensive -- it 12 has achieved incredible results in terms of fostering 13 trusting relationships across the political divide in 14 Northern Ireland. But it is expensive. 15 I haven't been able to obtain the total 16 expenditure annually by the organization from its business 17 reports, but the great preponderance of the cost relates 18 to the completely independent investigative process. 19 Most of their expenditure is spent on 20 having independent members who have full Police powers to 21 investigate the public Police. 22 And further, in conversations with members 23 of Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary, they have 24 told me that the sheer cost of the model renders it 25 unfeasible for development in Britain, Scotland and Wales.
421 These territories, much as in Ontario do 2 not suffer from the bitterly divided political context 3 that holds in Northern Ireland to justify sacrificing that 4 degree of efficiency for inclusiveness in Northern 5 Ireland. 6 And similarly to Britain, Scotland and 7 Wales, we ourselves -- our Police are not caught in the 8 midst of a civil war. 9 These facts suggest that the Northern Irish 10 model would be massively costly to implement in a 11 jurisdiction as large as Ontario, much larger than 12 Northern Ireland, with multiple Police services in our 13 province, there being only one (1) Police force in 14 Northern Ireland 15 And I think, more than this, it would be 16 disproportionately expenses -- expensive with respect to 17 our broader needs. 18 So, we're not making an argument simply for 19 saving money for the sake of saving money, but rather 20 thinking about responsibly allocating our finite policing 21 resources to meet all of our policing needs. 22 Now we've talked about before, and I think 23 many people certainly underestimate the degree to which 24 Police has been -- policing, as a process, has been 25 changing around the world. It's no longer the exclusive
431 business of the public Police. Many other agencies are 2 involved in policing today. 3 There are a range of pseudo-public Police 4 agencies that Police our airports, train stations, rail 5 lines. A massive private security industry which 6 outnumbers the public Police in Canada by a ratio of 2:1, 7 3:1 the United States, which Police many forms of mass 8 private property such as shopping centres in which 9 citizens spend more and more of their time. Much social 10 life takes place in spaces that are policed by private 11 agencies. 12 There are also a wide range of policing 13 initiatives, sort of radical community policing 14 initiatives such as those being undertaken in Toronto 15 under the ambit of Mayor David Miller's community safety 16 program which mobilize a network of civil agencies towards 17 producing security as a common good. 18 Now, at present, to whom are these other 19 policing agencies accountable? Where a citizen feels he 20 or she has been treated improperly by this range of non- 21 state policing institutions, to whom may they turn? 22 How can we make sure to reap the benefits 23 of these radical experiments in local community policing 24 and non-state security while preventing their hazards? 25 Now, obviously much of this goes beyond the
441 ambit of your present inquiry, but I think we can be 2 strategic within your present terms of reference to build 3 the appropriate institutions for overseeing public 4 policing that are aligned with later, broader approaches 5 for governing policing as a broader process as a whole. 6 Now, the public Police obviously continue 7 to play a very important role in policing, despite the 8 surgence of all of these other agencies in the role of 9 policing. We have reached a watershed moment in policing 10 and the question of its governance here in Ontario and 11 Canada, more broadly. 12 And if we respond imaginatively, and get it 13 right as we will, we will be at the forefront of 14 developers in policing globally. We will set the example 15 for other jurisdictions. 16 Now, the good news for us is that none of 17 this is particularly rocket science. Very much, policing 18 is not just a technical issue. How should we organize 19 these institutions? Where exactly should the line be 20 drawn dividing responsibilities? 21 These are not simply technical questions 22 but as we've heard from everybody tonight, and in other 23 submissions I'm sure you've noticed, it's very much a 24 political issue. 25 The question is: Where should the line be
451 drawn that will inspire confidence and trusting 2 relationships to permit the community and the Police to 3 work together in the way we've been saying we want to work 4 together for many years in community policing initiatives? 5 I believe, as the Northern Irish model is 6 probably too -- too far skewed in favour of total 7 independence and expense that we might look to examples 8 that in operation in Britain, Scotland and Wales where 9 there is a heavy emphasis on informal dispute resolution. 10 The public Police do, in practice, continue 11 to carry out many investigations of their own -- of 12 complaints received under the new legislation in Britain, 13 but there is a strong oversight commission, charged with 14 overseeing those investigations and removing control from 15 the public Police where they are not satisfied with the 16 investigation being undertaken by the public Police. 17 The question will be whether that model 18 which saves many resources, frees them up to deal with our 19 broader policing questions, would inspire confidence here 20 in Canada. It's too early in Britain. There haven't been 21 any studies to determine whether or not this is effective 22 but -- 23 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Professor 24 Kempa, am I not correct though that Scotland is looking at 25 a different system? That the one that just come into
461 place in, well, in Britain is one that really applies only 2 to England and Wales? 3 PROFESSOR MICHAEL KEMPA: Yes, I'm sorry. 4 You're correct. That's correct. 5 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Okay. And I 6 had the impression that it was a pretty expensive model. 7 PROFESSOR MICHAEL KEMPA: But certainly 8 less so than the model in -- 9 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: In Northern 10 Ireland. 11 PROFESSOR MICHAEL KEMPA: -- in Northern 12 Ireland. 13 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Right, okay. 14 PROFESSOR MICHAEL KEMPA: So, this model 15 would have a higher degree of independence than what we 16 had in Ontario prior to 1997. So, perhaps for our own 17 jurisdiction we should be deciding on some model between 18 those two (2). The critical question being, what is the 19 minimum required to achieve these trusting relationships? 20 I don't have the answers to that question 21 on the basis that there are no studies that had determined 22 what the critical features are for determining trust. But 23 it would seem to be that the previous system we had in 24 Ontario, the Police Complaints Commission, had a greater 25 degree of confidence across the public than does the
471 current system. 2 So, that greater degree of independence has 3 inspired confidence. I think that the legitimacy of 4 whatever an oversight commissioner is empowered to do in 5 Ontario would be enhanced if it was itself required to 6 report to Police services boards. 7 Or perhaps as I -- as I and many other 8 scholars believe and practitioners which ought to be 9 re-designated as policing boards charged with the business 10 of setting policy in collaboration with all of the 11 agencies working in policing in today's state and non- 12 state who are working on -- under common auspices -- 13 public auspices, but private institutions. 14 Where the oversight commission, however its 15 empowered is to satisfy with adjudication undertaken by 16 the Police service, it would be empowered to appeal to the 17 pertinent policing board who would then be empowered to 18 decide the appropriate resolution. 19 Policing boards in Northern Ireland have 20 achieved great success and have in particular been in 21 institution that the divided communities there have taken 22 ownership over and availed themselves a very responsible 23 co-operation with the public Police in those empowered 24 forums. Thank you very much. 25 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Mr. LeSage has
481 recognized somebody in the room. 2 Mr. Chadwick, would you like to make some 3 comments before we take -- well, you'll be the last 4 speaker before the break. So, I'm sure you... 5 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: I should tell 6 you, for those who don't know, Jim is a former colleague 7 of mine and -- but he is the person to whom the credit 8 goes for the creation of the mediation structure in the 9 civil law process in this Province. 10 And when I spoke with Mr. Chadwick the 11 other day I invited him to attend and I said I might call 12 on him if he was here so now I've done it. 13 HONOURABLE JAMES CHADWICK: I'm not used 14 to someone telling me I only have five (5) minutes though. 15 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: I'll give you 16 six (6). 17 HONOURABLE JAMES CHADWICK: Well, it's an 18 interesting foreword Chief Justice. As you know I was 19 involved in the mediation project here in Ottawa when we 20 set it up in the civil justice system. And as I listen to 21 the speakers tonight, the first thing I was happy to say 22 is that I was never been involved in any Police complaints 23 nor have really any knowledge about Police complaints. 24 And even as a lawyer I was never involved 25 in the process. Having listened to the speakers, I do see
491 that the mediation process may have some relevancy to the 2 resolution of some of these complaints. And I'm sure some 3 of the people here would say well, you know, civil 4 litigation, that's nothing to that. That's just a bunch 5 of people fighting with each other. 6 But civil litigation has a lot of emotion 7 involved in it. And it involves people suing each other. 8 Emotions run high. It's not a tea party. And, as you 9 know, from supporting us when you were the Chief Justice, 10 we implemented mandatory mediation in the civil process, 11 back -- just after 1995. 12 And what that required was people had to 13 attend mediation at the early stage of the litigation. 14 Before they spent their money on examinations for 15 discovery, before they spent a lot of money on legal fees, 16 they had to attend mandatory mediation. And we had a 17 roster of trained mediators. 18 And I might add that by doing that, we had 19 between sixty (60) to 70 percent satisfaction or 20 successful resolution of the cases at that early stage. 21 And the resolution wasn't imposed by some arbitrator or by 22 some -- some tribunal. It was an consensual resolution 23 between the parties. And it went a long way. 24 And one (1) of the things that impressed 25 me, the most part, was that it went a long way to
501 reestablish relationships. If you go through a formal 2 trial, as you know, former Chief Justice, that by the time 3 the trial finishes, the parties are not speaking to each 4 other. By the time you call your former employer a liar 5 and a cheat and a fraud, and visa versa, the emotions are 6 so high that people hate each other. 7 Whereas in the mediation process, it was 8 our experience that a lot of people got up and shook 9 hands, and left the room and were satisfied they had an 10 explanation as to what went wrong. 11 And you know the story of some of the, for 12 example, the Canadian Medical Protective did not want to 13 partake in mandatory mediations. They didn't want their 14 doctors to attend. But we found that when they did 15 attend, they told the patient what happened, and a lot of 16 the patients were satisfied with the explanation. And 17 that was the end of it. 18 It doesn't work in every case. It's not 19 the end-all to all sorts of conflict but it, in my view, 20 is something that should be explored. And I think it's 21 something that may have a lot of benefit to everybody in 22 the long run. 23 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Thank you. 24 MS. NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you very 25 much. I think we -- we can take our -- yeah, we can take
511 a ten (10) minute break and -- and come back around 2 quarter to -- quarter to 8:00, and we'll pursue the -- the 3 evening. 4 Thank you. Ten (10) minutes. Dix (10) 5 minutes. 6 7 --- Upon recessing at 7:40 p.m. 8 --- Upon resuming at 7:50 p.m. 9 10 MS. NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Bon. Can I 11 call you back? There are many people that still have to 12 make a presentation, please. 13 Can I call upon the next person, Mary 14 Smiley from the Ontario Association of Police Services 15 Board. 16 17 (BRIEF PAUSE) 18 19 MS. MARY SMILEY: Good evening, Justice. 20 Nice to see you again. And, Madam, it's nice to see you. 21 I appreciate the work you did with us when we were 22 discussing public and private investigators, two (2) years 23 ago I guess it is just about now. I'll try, I have a -- 24 MS. NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: For the people 25 who are going to be speaking, it's quite important that
521 you not be too close to the mike nor too far from it, I 2 was told. So it looks like it's an art but it's -- it's 3 easier for -- for the transcribers. So that, you know -- 4 and I think I'll ask her, if you don't hear properly, just 5 wave. Okay? Thank you. 6 Maybe -- all the things that are said here 7 tonight are going to be available, are part of a 8 transcription that will be publicly available so you can 9 consult it later. And so, thank you. 10 MS. MARY SMILEY: What I'd like to do is, 11 first, do a background on the Ontario Association of 12 Police Service Boards and the input that we are having 13 into this process. 14 The Ontario Association of Police Service 15 Boards is an organization made up of members of civilian- 16 Police governance boards from across Ontario. The OAPSB 17 has well over 85 percent of all Police service boards in 18 Ontario as its members ranging from every large urban 19 board to the -- to most of the smaller Section 10 Boards. 20 The Association has been working for over forty-two (42) 21 years to assist and support Police service boards through 22 the provision of a wide range of member services. 23 The Organization's primary objectives are 24 to foster the discussion of Police governance issues, 25 ideas and best practices amongst the membership and to
531 consider matters of provincial interest which affect 2 policing services and to formulate responses at the policy 3 making level from the perspective of civilian Police 4 governors. 5 The OAPSB provided some initial input to 6 the Minister regarding the review of the system for 7 complaints by the Public regarding the Police -- this 8 review. And then followed that up with a meeting with 9 Justice LeSage in June. 10 And at that time, we went to our membership 11 seeking advice and direction and feedback on the 12 complaints process and alternatives that could be brought 13 forward. The paper was developed and was passed by our 14 Board of Directors at our September meeting and you are in 15 possession of it, as I understand it. 16 We asked for a broad input. It was one (1) 17 of our suggestions that broad input be sought and -- and 18 developed and we are very pleased to see that this is 19 being done, has been done, and is continuing to be done. 20 We also felt that it was important that the Review consult 21 with community and Police organizations outside of 22 Toronto. 23 This was recommended because it was felt 24 that Toronto's experience is not that of most other 25 communities across the Province, so it was importance that
541 the Review balance have the community groups from small 2 communities, both in the north and the south as well as 3 those who experience municipal and contract policing; 4 that's Section 31 and Section 10 Boards. 5 Without the benefits of broad consultation 6 with it's members, the Board advised that it is this 7 Association's opinion that the process of civilian 8 oversight and complaint in Ontario generally works well 9 and that the Public is well-served by those processes. 10 To a certain extent, the Ontario Civilian 11 Commission on Police Services, OCCOPS, and every other 12 oversight and review process is somewhat constrained by 13 the realities of resource limitations, both at the 14 provincial and municipal levels and related training and 15 support for those limited resources. 16 Based on input received from the 17 membership, this Association continues to believe that the 18 existing processes work reasonably well and offer the 19 necessary tiered methodology for complaints review. The 20 existing process is outlined in Appendix 1 of our paper. 21 The OAPSB would like to encourage the 22 Ministry to build upon what works well in terms of 23 existing processes and look to continuously improve those 24 areas where weaknesses may have been identified through 25 the review.
551 The Association believes that the following 2 principles are generally reflected in the current 3 complaints process and can be used as the guidepost for 4 any continuous improvement initiatives to the process as 5 recommended by this review. It is useful to articulate 6 those principles that can be viewed as the hallmarks of an 7 effective Police complaint system and some of these 8 fundamental principles are: 9 An open and accessible system that is 10 accountable to the Public. 11 Flexibility in the system to permit several 12 avenues of resolution -- informal and formal. 13 An understandable and relatively system to 14 understand and to use. 15 Thorough and comprehensive investigations. 16 The use of highly trained investigators. 17 Public awareness of the availability of the 18 system and how the process operates. 19 Public confidence in the system. 20 Police confidence in the system. 21 A system that is fair and appears to be 22 fair to both Complainants and to the Police. 23 Investigations completed with a timely 24 manner and within a prescribed time line. 25 Complaints dealt with consistently in
561 accordance with uniform principles and processes. 2 Mechanisms to deal with a multiplicity of 3 proceedings arising from the same incident. 4 Avenues for review and appeal decisions. 5 Appropriate tiers of oversight of 6 investigations and of decisions. 7 Training for all participants in the 8 process, and that includes Boards, Police Chiefs, 9 investigators and officers. 10 With these principles in mind, the OAPSB 11 would like to offer the following continuous improvement 12 comments, for consideration as part of the review. 13 There seems to be a fundamental criticism 14 of the present system, due to concerns of the Police 15 investigating Police. The proponents of this argument 16 overlook or at least downplay the fact that a number of 17 other professions have a similar system of complaint 18 review, the Law Society, College of Physicians and 19 Surgeons, Professional Engineers, Press Council, Judicial 20 Council and others. 21 This criticism also ignores the civilian 22 oversight powers vested in OCCOPS. 23 The process is also under criticism, 24 because it is argued that it is very intimidating to make 25 a complaint about the Police at the local Police station.
571 The process should allow for a means to make it more 2 accessible and less intimidating, by modifying where 3 complaints can be made, and by what means. 4 This could -- include expanding the avenues 5 through which complaints can be made, giving consideration 6 to a direct complaint link to OCCOPS. Another option 7 would be to have the complaints filed outside of the 8 Police station at, for example, the Municipality's City 9 Clerk's office. Complainants -- complaints received in 10 this manner would then be turned over to the Police 11 Service for investigation in the usual manner. 12 Before making its final recommendations, 13 the review should conduct a thorough review of how 14 complaints have been handled, and how they have been 15 resolved. Are there any trends that point to problems in 16 the process or best practises that appear to be working 17 well. 18 Models that include mediation based 19 processes for resolving complaints would be less 20 adversarial, and would also be a more positive experience 21 for citizens. 22 A mediation based process could also 23 emphasize a learning approach for officers and the Police 24 Service. Complaints that are not of a criminal nature, 25 should be able to be dealt with relatively quickly through
581 a single process, or through a process of mediation. 2 The review should consider the capacity -- 3 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Is that the 4 brief that was submitted already to the -- 5 MS. MARY SMILEY: Yes. 6 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: So I just -- 7 I'm just concerned about whether you're going to read it 8 all -- 9 MS. MARY SMILEY: No, I'm not, no, I'm 10 just -- I'm just finishing. 11 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Okay, thanks. 12 MS. MARY SMILEY: Okay. The review should 13 consider the capacity of Police Services for handling 14 public complaints with regard to resources, training, and 15 support. 16 Larger Police Services tend to be able to 17 support a full line of officers dedicated to dealing with 18 the public's concern. At smaller Police Services, general 19 law enforcement officers try to fulfill the role and 20 expend an enormous amount of time addressing the public 21 complaints. 22 This draws resources from active Police 23 roles, and this is something that we want to see stopped, 24 is that front line officers should be on the front lines 25 out in the public.
591 And that citizens should be allowed to have 2 an effective avenue in order to move forward. 3 It would be helpful if the review would be 4 able to develop a discussion paper, or an options paper, 5 similar to that done recently with the Private 6 Investigator's Act, which would look at existing 7 practises, as well as other best practises from across the 8 country and internationally. 9 This paper could include the specific 10 issues raised during the reviews consultations, and 11 through this research. We provided these comments from 12 our membership, and we hope that the existing process that 13 is working reasonably well and offers the necessary tiered 14 methodology, will continue to be in place and can be 15 improved upon. 16 Thank you. 17 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you. 18 Ms. Samantha Smyth...? The Dancers' Equal Rights 19 Association. 20 MS. SAMANTHA SMYTH: Good evening. 21 My name is Samantha Smyth, and I'm the 22 Executive Director of the Dancers' Equal Rights 23 Association. We are a non-profit organization that is a 24 collective of current and former exotic dancers in the 25 Ottawa area.
601 DERA's mission is to promote equal rights 2 for exotic dancers in the Ottawa area, our aim is to 3 provide resources and peer support to enable exotic 4 dancers to acquire the equality and the rights that they 5 deserve as human beings. 6 With that being said, I'm here tonight to 7 address concerns that affect dancers, ability to access 8 Police services, including filing complaints, and to 9 provide suggestions for proactive and pro-social change. 10 A very basic human right is to receive 11 protection from the Police to prevent becoming a victim of 12 a crime and to be treated with dignity when going to the 13 Police to report being a victim of a crime. 14 Women who work as exotic dancers in Ottawa 15 are not given the same rights as other women who reside 16 here. The Police do not treat women as work -- who work 17 as exotic dancers with respect, often refusing them to 18 allow -- allowing them to file complaints against 19 offenders, let alone against officers who refuse to do so. 20 We deserve to be protected. We deserve to 21 be treated with dignity and we need you to listen to our 22 voices. Until the system does this, it is not fair, 23 effective, or transparent. 24 The lack of voice exotic dancers have bring 25 me to the systematic issues that the Police Complaints
611 Review should focus on, specifically one (1) 2 discrimination and two (2), access to the complaint 3 process. 4 Discrimination, specifically erotiphobia 5 (phonetic) and sexism of Police Officers and the entire 6 criminal justice system in Ontario affect the ability of 7 exotic dancers to file complaints with the Police, let 8 alone file complaints against perpetrators who victimize 9 them. 10 The systematic discrimination that exotic 11 dancers face by the Police deter them from filing 12 complaints about Police conduct. Dancers feel that if 13 they -- if they voice their complaints about Police 14 conduct, they will be targeted by the Police in the 15 future. 16 This belief deters dancers from -- from 17 filing complaints. This belief held by dancers needs to 18 change. However, it cannot until the treatment of exotic 19 dancers by Police changes from one (1) of stigma to one 20 (1) of respect. Until dancers are treated as equal 21 members of society, they simply will not file complaints 22 against the Police. 23 Therefore the system is flawed and it's 24 unfair. 25 The current system is not effective simply
621 because it's not accessed by those most discriminated 2 against and stigmatized against by the Police. 3 Only 6 percent of all women who are 4 sexually assaulted in Ottawa file complaints against the 5 Police. The other 94 percent of women who are sexually 6 insulted do not choose to file a complaint. 7 This reflects womens' belief that the 8 Police are not fair or effective. The Police are 9 transparent but not in the way that this review is 10 striving for. 11 Many women choose not to -- participate in 12 the system because they feel that a complaint against -- 13 and this should be perceived as a complaint against the 14 Police process itself. 15 Information about and access to the 16 complaint process, if people don't know about the process, 17 they can't access the process. Those who do know about 18 the process do not trust the process and therefore choose 19 not to use it. 20 This is a serious concern related to the 21 system itself. Members of the community need to be 22 informed of their rights to file a complaint against the 23 Police, shown how to do it, and given support while doing 24 it. 25 Women need to believe that the process
631 works. Currently, they do not. 2 The systematic discrimination against 3 women, especially those who work as exotic dancers, within 4 the Police Force will take an extensive time to rectify. 5 Therefore I do not believe the current system is -- of 6 reporting is fair, effective, or transparent to women. 7 Suggestions for change. I feel that the 8 Police Complaints Review should look at alternative 9 approaching to handling Police conduct with the public. 10 The Review wants to hear suggestions for fair, effective, 11 transparent model so I will provide a vision of that now. 12 There needs to be a shift from the current 13 system of complaints signed by individuals to anonymous 14 feedback forms, not complaints. Our society perceives 15 complaining as a negative thing. The word complaint 16 evokes negative connotations. The word feedback is 17 neutral and does not. 18 Every Police Officer in Ontario should be 19 required to provide a feedback form to every member of the 20 public that they have a significant interaction with. 21 This form should be given to all persons reporting crimes 22 and all persons being questioned, detained, charged, and 23 arrested by the Police. 24 This form will have the officer's name and 25 the badge number printed on it and a self-addressed stamp
641 to return in the mail. 2 The members of the public can simply fill 3 out a form about their interactions with that specific 4 Police Officer and it can be done easily, anonymously and 5 free of charge. 6 All forms should be compiled into a 7 progress report for each individual Police Officer in 8 Ontario. Each Officer would be given an annual public 9 feedback report about their own personal conduct with 10 members of the public. 11 Therefore the officer's conduct with the 12 members is a direct factor in their career advancement. 13 Only officers who receive high satisfaction reports should 14 be rewarded for their good behaviour. 15 These feedback forms need to be 16 incorporated into career advancement of Police in Ontario. 17 Therefore the Police are truly accountable to the members 18 of -- the public in Ontario. 19 Poor performance equals poor career 20 advancement, high performance equals high career 21 advancement. It's a simple equation that all can follow. 22 Fairness. This method is fair because it's 23 anonymous. All members of the community are given an 24 opportunity to freely express their opinions, an option to 25 be contacted should be allowed only if the person feels
651 that they are comfortable being named through the process. 2 Effectiveness. This method would be 3 effective because all interactions can be reported, 4 complaints as well as compliments. It is known that 5 individuals respond well to positive feedback. Police 6 Officers are no different and do need to be informed of a 7 job well done. 8 An officer's career advancement depends on 9 the public's perception of their conduct, ensure 10 effectiveness. 11 Transparency. This method would be 12 transparent because all persons are given an -- are 13 equally given an opportunity to respond. All members of 14 the community are given a voice. This ensures 15 transparency. 16 In conclusion, recommendations that the 17 review should seriously consider are addressing sexism and 18 erotiphobia as a systematic problem that blocks from women 19 from filing complaints. Especially women who are 20 stigmatized for their labour such as exotic dancers, 21 escorts, and sex workers. 22 Massive public education campaigns about 23 Police conduct and individuals rights to report complaints 24 against the Police needs to be taken. Incorporating 25 anonymous feedback forms for Police interaction with the
661 public. Officers need to know how they are perceived by 2 the community. 3 The annual results of these feedback forms 4 should directly related to career advancement of Police 5 officers. Officers need to be rewarded for good 6 behaviour. Not just discipline for bad behaviour. 7 Individual one (1) on one (1) support for 8 individuals who are going through the complaint process 9 needs to be given to these people. Especially women who 10 don't currently have a voice in Ottawa. 11 So thank you for taking the time to listen 12 to my voice tonight. Thank you. 13 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Mr. Vince 14 Westwick from the Ottawa Police Service. 15 CHIEF BEVAN: Good evening. Bonsoir. Mr. 16 Justice LeSage, I wanted to take this opportunity to 17 welcome you back to Ottawa. I'm very pleased that you 18 have come back to listen to our community and to receive 19 further presentations on this very important issue. 20 This evening you have met Vince Westwick in 21 the past and he is here to deliver an abbreviated 22 presentation which refers to an earlier presentation that 23 we have -- 24 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: And for the 25 record just to show its Chief Bevan, sorry. Make sure the
671 audience knows as well. 2 CHIEF BEVAN: Yes. And also we have with 3 us this evening Staff Sergeant Gerard Saberant (phonetic) 4 who is in charge of our Professional Standards Section. 5 But it should not come as a surprise to those in the 6 audience this evening who have been making presentations 7 that we too, think that the system can be improved. 8 And I would like to call upon Vince 9 Westwick to take you through a presentation that 10 illustrates some of the areas that we think can be 11 improved. 12 MR. VINCE WESTWICK: Thank you very much. 13 The Ottawa Police Service formally and fundamentally 14 respects the concept of public accountability for its 15 actions. Our purpose tonight is to have a meaningful 16 discussion about Police accountability and to make some 17 suggestions to enhance the public perception of that 18 accountability. 19 What do we know about complaints in Ottawa? 20 Statistically we know that in the year 2003 the Ottawa 21 Police Service received almost three hundred and fifty 22 thousand (350,000) calls for service. From those three 23 hundred and fifty thousand (350,000) calls for service, 24 the public filed two hundred and nineteen (219) 25 complaints.
681 In addition, the Police Service initiated 2 an additional two hundred and thirty-seven (237) internal 3 investigations or Chief's complaints. But we know that 4 statistics don't tell the whole story. 5 For example, we know that not everyone who 6 is unhappy with the Police -- with the Ottawa Police 7 Service files a complaint. We also understand that each 8 and every complaint is traumatic for the complainant, 9 difficult for the Officer and has ramifications for the 10 confidence of the public in its Police service. 11 We also know that there are things that can 12 make the system better. Our experience shows that 13 complainants only -- often only want an explanation. They 14 want the Officer to understand the impact of Police 15 actions. 16 On the other side, officers regularly 17 express frustration that they are not able to fully 18 explain their side. Especially in very public cases. 19 As well, there are often things that 20 officers can learn, even in those cases where they are 21 fully exonerated. The -- the restrictions associated with 22 today's process make these -- objectives difficult to 23 achieve. 24 The current Police complaints process has 25 historically had a process oriented focus on discipline.
691 Is there enough grounds for a charge, is there enough 2 evidence for a conviction, was the right punishment 3 imposed, and will there be an appeal? 4 The process is really a win/lose situation. 5 Either the complainant or the Police Officer wins, with 6 the other feeling very much the loser. The process often 7 leaves both parties unhappy and the situation unresolved. 8 This then can foster a lingering negative perception in 9 the community. 10 While discipline must always remain a part 11 of the Police environment, we invite you to consider the 12 profound value associated with the broader concept of 13 mediation for Police complaints. 14 Mediation incorporates accountability, but 15 also provides a mechanism to address the fundamentals of 16 the dispute. This creates a shift, in our submission, 17 with a win/win potential. 18 As you're aware, over the last several 19 years and as Justice Chadwick said earlier tonight, the 20 Ottawa Courts have been involved in a highly successful 21 mandatory mediation process for civil lawsuits. 22 They define mediation this way: A process 23 in which an impartial third party, the mediator, 24 facilitates communications between parties to a dispute, 25 to assist them in reaching a mutually acceptable solution
701 to the dispute. 2 I would like to highlight very briefly, 3 some of the reasons why we think mediation will work with 4 Police complaints. 5 1. Mediation is interest based, and is 6 therefore more conducive to the resolution than the rights 7 based process within Part V of the Police Services Act. 8 The direct involvement of the parties, 9 facilitated by a professional mediator, allows for a 10 settlement fashioned by and for the parties. Mediation 11 also provides an opportunity for the complainant and the 12 Officer, to address the anger and emotion that is so often 13 found in the complaint situations. 14 And lastly, mediation resolutions result in 15 increased participant satisfaction, enhanced public 16 confidence in the process, and in our submission, an 17 improved public perception of the Police service. 18 Over the last few years Ottawa -- the 19 Ottawa Police has had increasing success with the 20 mediation of Police complaints, it works. 21 We are presently exploring options to 22 expand our use of mediation to make it more available to a 23 broader spectrum of complaints. 24 I wish to very briefly, if I may, comment 25 on two (2) other matters.
711 Complaints are often -- complainants are 2 often far more interested in change, than just discipline. 3 This highlights the extensive risk management component 4 associated with the complaints process. Risk management 5 means learning from your experience and applying it to the 6 way you conduct business in the future. 7 While complaints are typically about the 8 conduct of individual Police Officers, the opportunity 9 exists for the Police Service to learn and to develop. 10 For example, following the controversial G- 11 20 meetings in Ottawa, the Police Service virtually 12 rewrote its crowd management policies, resulting in a much 13 different policing experience with the G-8 meetings 14 several months later. 15 Another example occurred this past week in 16 Ottawa, when seventy thousand (70,000) public service went 17 -- public servants went on strike. With some pride, we 18 point to the fact that the headlines have been about the 19 collective bargaining process, and not about -- not 20 describing Police clashes on the picket line. 21 While the Ottawa Police has an aggressive 22 risk management strategy tied to its complaint function, 23 we have no capacity to benefit from the experiences 24 province-wide. It is open, we would suggest, for the 25 process to be more proactive in providing information on
721 provincial trends, patterns, and as an earlier speaker 2 suggested, best practises. 3 My last point is to invite you to consider 4 the provisions for discretion, to adopt local practises 5 and procedures, that work for that community and its 6 Police Service. 7 Complaints, as we said earlier tonight as 8 well, need not be a one (1) size fits all process. For 9 example, if there is a willingness among the stakeholders 10 in Ottawa to pursue a strategy that meets the objectives - 11 - of the Act, and yet at the same time, incorporates local 12 ideas and approaches, the system ought not only to allow 13 it, it ought to encourage it. 14 And if I may give a very small example of 15 that, and perhaps not the best example, but the idea of -- 16 of off-site offices, for professional standards offices. 17 In 1995 the Ottawa Police set up a -- an off-site office 18 in this facility -- in the City Hall -- with the thinking 19 that it would -- that -- that both Police officers and the 20 Public would be much more comfortable coming to a non- 21 police facility. 22 It actually didn't work. What happened is, 23 is that Complainants typically went to one (1) of our 24 Police buildings, wanted to file their complaint there, 25 and then were told that they would have to come to City
731 Hall to do it. 2 And by the time they arrived at City Hall, 3 they were even increasingly agitated because they had to 4 park their car twice and come to the -- come to the -- the 5 -- the second facility. So, it was an experiment that was 6 tried and didn't work in Ottawa; it may work in other -- 7 in other -- in other facilities. 8 We're very grateful for the opportunity to 9 speak to you tonight and we wish you very well in your 10 deliberations. We will look forward to your 11 recommendations. 12 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Thank you 13 both, Chief Bevan, thank you and Mr. Westwick and I must 14 say, Mr. Westwick touched on a point that's an area that 15 presents many challenges in attempting to arrive at a 16 structure, because we have Police services in this 17 province for large, large cities like Ottawa and Windsor 18 and Hamilton and Toronto. 19 And we have Police services, I believe the 20 smallest one, I think, is either a two (2) or three (3) 21 member service in, I should know it, it's just north of, 22 in Stirling, a small village north of Belleville. 23 And then there are -- we also have Police 24 services in this province that we've met with in the 25 north.
741 They're quite large services, First Nations 2 Police services, where the twenty-five (25) or thirty-five 3 (35) communities they service are not accessible by land; 4 they're accessible only by air or water, so it's very much 5 a challenge. 6 And Mr. Westwick's comment about trying 7 to devise something that is not one (1) size that fits 8 all, I think there's a lot of merit in that, so in 9 structuring a system, I guess I will be recommending and 10 mine are only recommendations, but that there be a 11 structure with some flexibility. Thank you. 12 MR. VINCE WESTWICK: Thank you very much. 13 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you. 14 Ms. Heather Cuthboard (phonetic) from the 15 Sexual Assault Support Centre of Ottawa. 16 MS. AMANDA GRAHAM: Heather Cuthboard -- 17 Heather Cuthboard was unable to be here this evening, so 18 I'm taking her place. My name's Amanda Graham, I'm from 19 the Sexual Assault Support Centre of Ottawa and joining me 20 is my colleague, Sonnie Mariner (phonetic). 21 So, thank you for holding this very 22 important public forum. The Sexual Assault Support Centre 23 is a frontline agency that offers crisis and ongoing 24 counselling to women who have experienced sexual violence. 25 We also offer advocacy and accompaniment around Police --
751 Police issues. 2 Of the very few women that do report to the 3 Police, specifically -- Of the very few women that do 4 report to the Police, specifically the sexual assault 5 unit, most of them are, we find -- the stories that we 6 hear -- most of them are disbelieved, their rights to 7 support are denied, investigations are not initiated and 8 often women are threatened with countercharges if they 9 pursue the matter. For these women, there is no 10 reasonable avenue for accountability or a timely 11 complaints process. 12 As you are aware, because of women's safety 13 and the ability to collect evidence, sexual assault cases 14 are extremely time sensitive. Currently, the Police 15 complaints process is ineffective and inaccessible for the 16 women who use our services. 17 We require a system that validates women's 18 experiences and an external complaints process that holds 19 Police accountable and ensures that women's safety and the 20 safety of the community is not jeopardized. Sonnie's 21 going to talk about some of the recommendations we have 22 around this. 23 MS. SONNIE MARINER: Hi. I hope that 24 everybody can hear me. Thank you for this time. Before I 25 begin I'd just like to thank the Dancers Equal Rights
761 Association for being present this evening and for their 2 presentation. 3 I believe it's difficult for women's 4 organizations, particularly marginalised ones, to present 5 in this type of form. And we're very appreciative to hear 6 the voices of other women's organizations in our community 7 here this evening. 8 To that end, I'd just like to note before I 9 begin, a short list here of recommendations. What the 10 limitations of these recommendations are. 11 As was mentioned by Samantha Smyth when she 12 was speaking, 94 percent of sexual assaults in this city 13 are not reported. So recommendations that we make to you 14 tonight regarding complaints, represent a very small 15 percentage of women within the community. 16 The vast majority of women, as well, who -- 17 who experience difficulty when reporting, are not 18 necessarily connecting with community agencies like sexual 19 assault support centres. So there are many, many stories 20 that we are not even hearing. So those women also can't 21 be represented here tonight. 22 Further, marginalised women and women who 23 are criminalized in our communities have no ability, 24 usually, to access a complaints process. Women of colour, 25 street involved women, women involved in the sex trade, as
771 I said, those women very often do not have voices in 2 processes such as these. 3 So our recommendations tonight, we 4 recognize, do not include, for the most part, their 5 experience. And their issues need to be address, I think, 6 on a deeper level. 7 So our first recommendation is that we know 8 that we need to create a timely process to request review 9 of Police decisions to close investigations. Very often, 10 sexual assault investigations are closed. Women are 11 informed of this by messages on answering machines, things 12 of that nature. And there is no way for them to appeal 13 that decision to close the investigation. 14 Possibly, this might entail the role of a 15 Police liaison, an ombudsman, a Police advocate, any 16 number of structures in place where women could respond. 17 But currently the Professional Standards Process is 18 lengthy and doesn't allow for a timely response to that 19 situation. 20 I was pleased to hear Mr. Westwick speak 21 about the -- the need for officers as well to be able to 22 communicate back their reasons for things, and where they 23 stand on different issues. 24 Because we were hoping that one of the 25 things that could be provided, would be written reasons to
781 sexual assault complainants when they -- when Police deem 2 a complaint unfounded or false. 3 Currently, women receive nothing in writing 4 from the investigating officers that explains why their 5 complaints were not acted on. And, thus, they find 6 themselves in a position of reporting anecdotally on what 7 was said to them, but with no actual paperwork in order to 8 lodge complaints with. 9 We'd also like some process for women to 10 appeal those conclusions, as we said, in a timely fashion, 11 so that assailants are not able to slip away. One problem 12 with a lengthy process is that a sexual abuser or someone 13 who's committed sexual assault, while that woman is trying 14 to go through a complaint's procedure about her experience 15 in the Police department, that person is fast slipping 16 away and is unapprehended. 17 That's a concern to many of the women that 18 we speak to in our centres. And we would like to see some 19 way that we can enact this, again, in a timely fashion, so 20 that doesn't happen and so that criminals are not at large 21 in our communities. 22 We'd like to see a list of rights and 23 guarantees for the complainant in the Professional 24 Standards Process. Currently, the process requires 25 specific behaviours on the part of complainants. For
791 example, filing periods, forms of filing, things like 2 that, but guarantees no accountability back to those 3 complainants. 4 Some of the examples that we'd like to see, 5 might be time commitments in terms of responding to and 6 ruling on complaints. Women have a certain amount of time 7 in order to file, but they are not -- there's no 8 reciprocal commitment back to them for when they might 9 hear. Often we've seen cases where women have heard 10 nothing back for up to a year. 11 The ability to hear the officer's claims 12 and respond to or rebut them. Currently what seems to be 13 happening is women submit a written complaint, may speak 14 once or twice with a Professional Standards Officer, and 15 then don't hear anything again until they receive a 16 ruling, a written ruling. 17 That written ruling might say what the 18 responding Officer said, but that woman doesn't have the 19 opportunity to argue her case. She only has the 20 opportunity simply to present it within that complaints 21 process. 22 She should also have the ability to name 23 her own witnesses and provide her own evidence to 24 substantiate her claim. If she had somebody present who 25 heard comments an Officer made to her in the process, or
801 somebody who is -- who is aware of her sexual assault, who 2 was not questioned by the Police and wasn't asked for a 3 statement by the Police, she should have the ability to 4 bring that person forward to substantiate her -- her 5 claims. 6 We elaborate further on some of these 7 commitments we would expect from a complaint's process in 8 the written submissions that we've already given you. So 9 we won't reiterate all of those at this time. And, 10 further, in the written submissions we plan to submit 11 before November 12th too. 12 We only wish to underline at this time that 13 the current professional standards guarantees no specific 14 rights and makes no specific commitments to complainants 15 even though it makes a number of statutory demands of them 16 which we think is certainly problematic. 17 We echo what others have said in that there 18 must be a mechanism for agencies and third party advocates 19 and service providers to make complaints on behalf of the 20 communities they represent. 21 By only allowing individuals to complain we 22 isolate one (1) person, in this instance one (1) woman, in 23 the face of a large, powerful, intimidating institution. 24 It further disallows agencies and advocates from calling 25 attention to patterns of Police behaviour that we have the
811 ability to observe but individuals do not. 2 So as opposed to individual transgressions, 3 we can see larger systemic problems but have no way to 4 address those. We'd further like to ask that Police 5 report statistically on what happens to sexual assault 6 cases reported to them. 7 In order to hold people accountable we have 8 to have transparency of what's happening when the public 9 goes in to make reports. Currently, there's a problem in 10 that the community has no easy access to statistics. They 11 may exist somewhere but we haven't been able to locate 12 them. 13 So they have no easy access to -- 14 statistics on how cases are specifically dealt with. So, 15 for instance, I can't give you what number of reports were 16 made last year that were then deemed either, one (1), 17 unfounded, two (2), false, or three (3), non-actionable. 18 We'd like to see what's actually happening 19 to cases as -- reports as they go in and where they're 20 ending up. So it's harder to -- because it's harder to 21 pinpoint larger systemic problems when we don't have that 22 -- those numbers or access to those numbers. 23 We further echo others in calling for the 24 right to complain beyond a six (6) month time limit. For 25 many women, and indeed children, it may take many years
821 for them to recognize that what was done to them in the 2 reporting process may have been wrong or re-victimizing. 3 Often women are only beginning to think 4 about those things later when they come to agencies for 5 support. Initially, they are still reacting and 6 responding to the trauma of sexual assault or sexual 7 abuse. 8 We feel that it's unfair and completely 9 lacking in compassion to expect that they should be 10 emotionally ready to tackle the Police department while 11 they're attempting to cope with the traumatic effects of 12 the sexual assault. 13 Thus, extending that time period might 14 allow women, for example who've had this experience when 15 they're early teenagers, to speak about it later when they 16 -- when they have had some time to heal and recuperate 17 from the actual event. Thank you. 18 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you. 19 Thank you both. So we now have some time for some people 20 who would want to -- who did not have the time to identify 21 themselves earlier. 22 I would ask, if -- if possible obviously, 23 if the same rules will apply. It will only be five (5) 24 minutes and also don't forget that you can still continue 25 to -- to send your remarks to Monsieur LeSage afterwards.
831 And also if you've -- if your point has 2 been taken up already or if you're -- if you've already 3 had the occasion to speak to Monsieur LeSage, we're trying 4 not to extend this beyond its call. 5 So, Monsieur Smith...? 6 MR. PAUL SMITH: Good evening. Thank you 7 for hearing me tonight. My name is Paul Smith. I'm an 8 activist in the Ottawa community here. The -- I've filed 9 two (2) Police complaints with the Ottawa Police Services. 10 And I had -- I understand that you don't 11 want to bring up the individual complaints but I'm not 12 really sure how we can deal with what problem we have 13 within the system unless we actually can take some of the 14 -- the complaints and see what went wrong. 15 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: I think the 16 point is that I have no authority and I'm not here to deal 17 with complaints but rather with the complaints process. 18 So if your -- if your comments can be directed towards the 19 process and suggestions for change, that's the essence of 20 it. 21 MR. PAUL SMITH: Very good. Well, both of 22 -- both of my complaints had to do with non-violent civil 23 disobedience. And what is passive resistance, what has 24 been defended by the Supreme Court in that we are 25 entitled, if we so choose, to passively resist and if an
841 Officer asks us to get up and get in the Police cruiser, 2 as long as we are not actively resisting, we can refuse to 3 move. 4 Because that's -- that's our position. 5 That's why we're there, is to act using our bodies to stop 6 what we perceive as an injustice. 7 In both cases what I felt with the Ottawa 8 Police Services is that basically their -- their 9 investigation was -- was -- wasn't an investigation. 10 I was -- in the first case I was -- I 11 filed my complaint, not knowing really what the process 12 was. And I said, I'm -- I'm complaining about these 13 specific incidents that happened, at this demonstration. 14 And when people were arrested and -- and the use of dogs 15 and the use of tasers, and I was never interviewed. 16 A decision was made, and I was never called 17 up and asked to give my side of the story. I was told 18 that there were no reports to the hospitals that day about 19 dog bites, so I wasn't bit by a dog. I had photographs of 20 the teeth marks, I didn't go to a doctor. Now, this to me 21 is shoddy investigation. 22 In my second complaint, which happened over 23 an incident where I was not even involved in the protest, 24 I was there as -- as a member of Legal Support Ottawa, and 25 observing a demonstration on Laurier. I was -- I was
851 arrested and I was tasered, and again for -- for 2 essentially passively resisting, after I had a number of 3 other abuses hurled at me, I decided that I was not going 4 to cooperate to -- to go to the -- the Police car. 5 The difference, I believe in this, I -- I - 6 - there was -- I got a twenty-five (25) page response 7 about six (6) months later, explaining how actually the 8 Police acted appropriately, based on what was happening. 9 Now, there was a video involved. Again, 10 there were -- I did not feel that the investigation -- 11 there were a number of witnesses. I was -- I actually had 12 a video that I got a hold of to take down to give to the 13 officers. And that was the -- they -- they got me in and 14 started interviewing me, I said, no, no, no, I do not want 15 -- I don't want -- I'm not prepared to be interviewed, I 16 came to drop this evidence off. I was not interviewed 17 again after that, and asked any more specifics about what 18 had happened. 19 That complaint has gone on to the -- the 20 Ontario Civilian Commission on Police Services and they 21 have ordered a hearing. Why do I think there was a 22 difference in the -- the first one (1) where I went for an 23 appeal, and -- and they said, no, everything was fine. 24 There was video evidence. There were people there that 25 had taken a video.
861 And so, that's one (1) of the 2 recommendations that I would have, besides the fact that I 3 don't believe that the Ottawa Police are capable of 4 investigating their own officers. I believe this has to 5 be taken outside to some -- somewhere there has to be some 6 impartial third party that would be investigating this. 7 But that all videotape that the Police 8 office -- the Police have in their possession, should be 9 relinquished, not just the choice bits that the Police 10 would like to relinquish when -- when there's a complaint 11 involved. 12 In short, based on my experience, I'd just 13 like to say that there's -- there needs to be a massive 14 overhaul. I know that within the activist community, 15 people, unless they felt that they had enough evidence to 16 -- to do a civil case, people feel that Police complaints 17 are a joke. That there's -- there's -- they're -- you 18 know, we're busy people. If you want to waste your time 19 and go -- go ahead with the Police process, the results 20 you'll get may be what I've gotten so far, which has been 21 very inadequate. 22 Thank you for hearing me. 23 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Thank you. 24 25 (MS. VICTORIA MASON THEN GAVE A PRESENTATION. HER
871 PRESENTATION HAS BEEN OMITTED FROM THIS TRANSCRIPT AS IT 2 DID NOT ADDRESS THE MATTERS UNDER REVIEW) 3 4 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Thank you. I 5 have one -- Sherril Noble...? 6 MS. SHERRIL NOBLE: Good evening and thank 7 you for letting me speak tonight. I jotted down a few 8 notes. I've listened to a lot of the people that are here 9 tonight and a lot of them I back. 10 A lot of the information that's being 11 provided regards to -- to the ladies that had spoken about 12 the levels of intimidation. The suggestions that they've 13 provided are very creative as well as very effective and 14 inexpensive. 15 One of the things I'd like to bring up is 16 the public perception and as being part of the community, 17 I talk to quite a few people who live around in our area. 18 The perception is, is that the City runs our Police 19 officers. 20 And with the political influence that we 21 keep seeing happen all the time, we don't feel that our 22 Police officers are able to do the job that they are 23 mandated to do. 24 The -- there is policies that are written. 25 There are structures to be followed but they -- I feel
881 that they are unable to do their jobs in that manner. 2 The other thing we find is the -- the 3 criminals have more rights than the victims. I know that 4 there is policy that's being worked on in order to bring 5 that up but I still feel that there is a lot more work 6 that needs to be done in that manner, that the victims 7 feel more victimized when they end up bringing issues to 8 the table. 9 I also agree with the individual who 10 brought up that complaints are an opportunity for change. 11 If those complaints are listened to and actioned then I 12 feel that our Police department can and will be able to 13 grow appropriately. 14 The question I have for you though is you 15 keep saying that there's going to be a report done, is 16 this report going to be on the website or posted on the 17 website when the final report comes out? 18 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: I'm afraid I 19 can't answer that. And the reason I can't is that I am 20 simply -- this is not a public inquiry -- 21 MS. SHERRIL NOBLE: Okay. 22 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: -- or a 23 commission of inquiry. I have simply been asked to 24 prepare a review and a report to the Attorney General for 25 Ontario. I will prepare that report, give it to him.
891 Now, I will be very, very surprised if he 2 doesn't make it public. Has he even any indication, do 3 you know -- 4 MR. JOHN LEE: He will be making it 5 public. 6 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: All right. 7 There -- 8 MS. SHERRIL NOBLE: He will be making it 9 public? 10 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: -- you have -- 11 I'm sorry -- I'm sorry, I do have an answer. It will be 12 made public. 13 MS. SHERRIL NOBLE: Okay. 14 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: This is Mr. 15 Lee who's with the Ministry of the Attorney General. 16 MS. SHERRIL NOBLE: Okay, is that going to 17 be posted on the website that this gentleman is using 18 right now? 19 MR. JOHN LEE: I don't know but certainly 20 it will be made public. 21 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Okay. 22 MS. SHERRIL NOBLE: The other thing is, is 23 the information that this lady is writing down all night, 24 will that be posted on your website? 25 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: I understand
901 it will be, yes. 2 MS. SHERRIL NOBLE: Okay. Great, thank 3 you very much. 4 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: Thank you. 5 DEAN NATHALIE DES ROSIERS: Well, I want 6 to thank you all for this public meeting on this -- on 7 this important subject, difficult subject. 8 So I particularly want to thank all of you 9 have come and given some time, as citizens, to participate 10 in these things. I think it is to be appreciated when 11 citizens come and -- and listen and make their voices 12 known. I think everybody respects that, and appreciates 13 the time that you took out of your schedule to come. 14 I want to also like to thank our 15 translator, who were here today, earlier tonight, they're 16 still there. So, merci -- merci aux traductrices. Et 17 merci aussi a l'organisation de la Ville d'Ottawa. Merci 18 a ceux qui ont prTsentT et suivi toutes les consignes. 19 Thank you for following all the directives 20 and -- and as you know, you can always continue to -- to 21 make your comments known, if necessary, by November 12th. 22 Do you want to make any here? 23 HONOURABLE PATRICK LESAGE: May I just 24 take this opportunity to, on your behalf, and certainly on 25 mine, to thank Dean Des Rosiers for agreeing to chair this
911 meeting tonight. And have a nice evening all. Thank you. 2 3 --- Upon adjourning at 8:50 p.m. 4 5 6 Certified Correct, 7 8 9 10 ___________________ 11 Wendy Warnock, Ms. 12 Court Reporter 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25