Comparing B.C. with Ontario (III)
A conflict between Ontario police and the SIU
contrasts with the very chummy relationship
between B.C. cops and the OPCC
May 7, 2010
An ongoing dispute between Ontario police and the Special Investigations Unit has reached the provinces Superior Court of Justice. The controversy involves note-vetting, in which police officers write notes about a serious incident only after considerable delay, consultation with each other and consultation with a lawyer, who also talks to all other officers involved. The notes are then submitted as evidence.
The SIU is one of Ontarios two police oversight agencies. Unlike B.C.s Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner, it actually investigates police. The SIU does so using civilian investigators, some of whom come from a purely civilian background. Following an investigation, the SIU director can lay criminal charges.
In addition, theres another way that the SIU differs from the OPCC. The SIU stands up to the police.
The OPCCs chummy relationship with cops might be explained by a powerful police lobby. (More info here and here.) In Ontario, open conflict has broken out as police management and unions see their interests challenged by a much more effective system of police accountability. In B.C., however, the police lobby seems powerful enough to work quietly behind the scenes.
That could also explain the spectacle of two otherwise antagonistic political parties uniting to preserve B.C.s police status quo.
Is it any wonder that B.C.s Mounties are so willing to put themselves under provincial oversight?
Police accountability: Comparing B.C. with Ontario (I)
Their system is a flawed work in progress
but it surpasses ours in three crucial areas
Police accountability: Comparing B.C. with Ontario (II)
Without an ombudspersons strong oversight
B.C.s police watchdog will remain B.C.s police lapdog
Police accountability: Comparing B.C. with Ontario (IV)
Ontarios NDP criticizes the AG for
buckling under a very powerful police lobby.
Meanwhile B.C.s NDP, Liberals and cops
stand united against police accountability
Police accountability: Comparing B.C. with Ontario (V)
Ontarios SIU faces public criticism and a second investigation
by the provincial Ombudsman. B.C.s OPCC continues to escape scrutiny
Police accountability: Comparing B.C. with Ontario (VI)
You wont read this in B.C.s mainstream media.
And thats part of the reason well never have effective police oversight