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CRIM 2652 (37)
Anna Pratt (14)

second of winter.docx

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York University
CRIM 2652
Anna Pratt

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 ‘fine-tuning’ Toronto Police Services Board • 7 member ‘civilian’ body that oversees the Toronto Police Service TPSB: effective mechanism of accountability? i) Structural Limits: Wearing Two Hats  Cannot talk to frontline officers  Must go through police Chief  Cannot share information from PSB with the public  Cannot direct police on how to police their community ii) Contested Role and Scope of PSBs  “politicians who happen to form the government… should be kept in ignorance of the day to day operation of the police force and even the security force” (Trudeau, 1977 in Sewell 2010:98)  “The arguments for ‘keeping politics out of the police’ are largely fraudulent. No matter how the system is structured, the police governing body must ultimately be responsible to the public- that is accountability and that is politics.” politics is always involved in politicking; therefore, need to ensure clear accountability through public means.”((Palmer, 1979 in Sewell, 2010:98) s. 31 Police Services Act “The board shall not direct the chief of police with respect to specific operational decisions or with respect to the day to day operation of police force” • ‘leave the chief alone’ vs. findings of 2012 Morden Report on police actions during the 2010 g20 summit. iii) ‘Closed shop culture’ of police (Sewell) Dangerous job of police leads to a culture of suspicion and lack of trust of ‘outsiders’— sewell argues that this is reproduced through: below Reproduced through: • Recruitment and hiring processes • Training processes—at Ontario police college. Sewell argues why not train them in universities for example. • Intimidation and harassment –people on the police services board. All of them resigned. The vast majority of complaints are made by other police officers. 2. Towards a more accountable police force 1. Inform public about policing issues and option (vs. secrecy) that would open up meetings and decisions and make these accessible to the public 2. Transparent decision making 3. Engage debate about options and alternatives (rather than ‘leave the chief alone’ approach) 4. Sense of public ownership of the police Select recommendations • Enlarge police boards—larger police board that might help diversify opinions, and engage debate, and members can support each other more. • POLICING boards (C. Shearing): a civilian body that oversees all of the different agencies involved in policing (both private and public agencies), and treat police as one agency that is cooperating in effort to create safe cities and protect the public. Why should we care? • Civilian oversight and the promise of community policing • Building healthy cities • Police powers in a liberal democracy “Civilian oversight of our police is essential. It acts as a check and balance against the legal powers society has given the police to enforce the law. Effective oversight of the police is the way that the public and the police remain partners in the preservation of public safety. For the police to be effective in our communities, the public must have respect for those that perform policing functions. The governance and accountability that civilian oversight creates work in tandem”. Discretion and the policing of intimate partner violence “The police make policy about what law to enforce, how much to enforce it, against whom, and on what occasion” – Kenneth Culp Davis, 1975). 1. The scope of the problem in Canada 2. Historical overview 3. Factors influencing criminalization reforms 4. Assessing the impact of criminalization 5. The Search for Alternatives Whats in a name? –its important to know the difference between all of these • Family violence • Domestic violence • Intimate partner violence • Wife assault • wife battery • Wife abuse • Wife beating • Partner abuse • Wife torture The pro-charge policing policy in cases of intimate partner violence 1982 Directive from Federal Solicitor General
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