Thursday November 28, 2013
Police Powers and Accountabi ity
Police Powers and Accountability – Adam Vaughan, City Councillor
• Toronto Police Services Board
o Setting budgets
o Develop police policy/strategies E.g. by using crime stats, put correct
number of police in correct area
o City council generally has power to budget policing▯ of police
o Professional standards and public complaints.
o Track and watch police DUI, anger issues, and other issues to make sure
that police are not harm to self or othe▯ ublic trust
o Regulates usage of police tools. E.g. regulations for tasers.
o Can be appointed by council, province, or mayor’s office
• Toronto Police Service Board Members/City Councillors cannot direct frontline
officers on their job.
o B/c you will be in charge of promotions, so don’t want bias
o You are overseeing officer’s performance, so don’t want bias.
• City councillors not allowed to bring police complaints to public. Must bring to
police service board directly.
• When Calgary cop comes to Toronto, are
1. Police Governance
Toronto City Council
• Mayor and 44 elected City Councillors • Sets amount and parameters of police budget
• Allocation and spending of police resources (e.g. helicopter? Tasers?)
• No direct oversight or ‘finetuning’▯ o direct oversight over police practices
Toronto Police Services Board
• 7 member ‘civilian’ body that oversees the Toronto Police Service
• Toronto Police Services Act lays out who makes up those 7 members.
• Awkward/difficult position for city council members who are also on Toronto
Police Services Board ▯ ot allowed to talk to frontline officers about their
position/duties.▯ nvolved in filing complaints about police/promoting officers
▯ annot be seen to have relationships w/ officers that compromise their
objectivity▯ annot direct police on how to police their community c▯ annot
address the public directly▯ ust only speak with police chief.
o Problematic because Vaughan wanted to address public after Eatons
Center but couldn’t ▯ hy are civilian organizations most restricted in
times of bad events happening?
ii) Contested Role and Score of PSBs
• “Politicians who happen to form the government…should be kept in ignorance of
the day to day operation of the police force ”
• 2 QUOTES OFF SLIDES
S. 31 Police Services Act
• “The Board shall not direct the chief of police with respect to specific operational
decisions or with