New police anti-racism committee tackles systemic racism barriers in Mississauga and Brampton
Published August 10, 2022 at 4:18 pm
A new anti-racism group hopes to help police in Mississauga and Brampton reduce the negative impact of policing diverse communities and break down systemic barriers.
On Wednesday, Peel Regional Police (PRP) announced the formation of it’s independent Anti-Racism Advisory Committee (ARAC), which is a collaboration between police, the Peel Police Services Board and the Ontario Human Rights Commission.
The committee is made up of 21 Mississauga and Brampton residents from a wide range of backgrounds, including business leaders, entrepreneurs, social workers and teachers among others.
As a collaboration between police, the Peel Police Services Board and the Ontario Human Rights Commission, PRP say the ARAC will help address systemic racism in the service by giving advice and feedback on anti-racism practices.
Chief Nishan Duraiappah called the new committee “a critical component” of the PRP’s commitment to “human rights-centred work in dismantling systemic racism.”
“We look forward to working with our ARAC representatives and continuing to make impactful changes together that will lead to better outcomes for everyone in Peel Region,” Duraiappah said in a statement.
The ARAC was born out of a Memorandum of Understanding between police and the Ontario Human Rights Commission to eliminate systemic racism in policing, promote transparency and accountability, and enhance Black, other racialized and Indigenous communities’ trust in policing throughout Peel Region.
Activists had previously petitioned the Peel Police Services Board to establish an anti-black racism panel, but that proposal was scrapped in favour of a committee to deal with broader systemic inequities experienced by many diverse groups, including the Indigenous and LGBTQ2 communities.
A December 2020 survey on policing in Peel found many residents were sceptical of the force’s willingness to address systemic racism, with only 45 per cent saying the force demonstrates commitment to achieving police reform.
More than half of those surveyed said policing in Peel Region needs reform at 58 per cent, and the survey found people want to see “more accountability and greater transparency” when police interact with the public they serve.insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies