Ontario’s Police Chiefs Unveil Best Practices Guidelines for Police Serving LGBTQ Communities
Groundbreaking document aims to strengthen relationships between gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities and police
For Immediate Release: November 5, 2013
(Toronto, ON) – Ontario’s police leaders have released a best practices document – the first of its kind in Canada – which will help police services address issues of importance to members of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities across the province.
A press conference will take place Tuesday, November 5th, 2013 at 10 am at the 519 Church Street Community Centre, 519 Church Street, Toronto.
The Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police’s (OACP) 80-page Best Practices in Policing and LGBTQ Communities in Ontario is the result of an extensive research project led by Kyle Kirkup, a lawyer and criminal law scholar who examines LGBTQ issues.
Chief Paul Cook, the OACP’s President, said the guidelines examine critical areas for improving how police interact with LGBTQ communities.
“Ontario’s police leaders acknowledge that our relationships with our gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities have often been marked by discrimination, prejudice, and harassment,” said Chief Cook (North Bay Police Service). “This document sends a strong signal to our LGBTQ communities and to everyone in our police organizations, that police are determined to proactively address issues that are of importance to our LGBTQ citizens, their families, and their friends.”
As a living document, Best Practices in Policing and LGBTQ Communities in Ontario will assist police services to actively deal with issues related to police and members of LGBTQ communities. By having Ontario police services and community organizations share their knowledge and experiences, the OACP is seeking to equip police leaders and personnel better serve all members of our communities.
Kyle Kirkup, a Trudeau Scholar at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, hopes the work will also lead to projects in other jurisdictions.
“Police Chiefs, officers, and community groups from across Ontario have been incredibly supportive in the development of this resource document,” said Kirkup. “This is the first document of its kind ever published in Canada, and we hope that it will serve as a model for other police organizations in Canada and internationally.”
Best Practices in Policing and LGBTQ Communities in Ontario was developed under the auspices of the OACP Diversity Committee. It received extensive input from police and community groups across Ontario. For a copy of the document, please visit http://www.oacp.ca.
For more information, contact:
Director of Government Relations & Communications
T. (416) 926-0424, ext. 22
C. (416) 919-9798
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