Peel Regional Police Release Report on Systemic Racism Survey Results

In our continuous efforts to identify and address systemic racism, Peel Regional Police, the Peel Police Services Board, and the Ontario Human Rights Commission have collaborated to develop a survey to gather community input on experiences with, and perceptions of, Peel Regional Police. We hope that the results of this survey will give us a thorough understanding of the experience Peel residents have with the police, which will better enable us to implement remedies.

People (1,102) who live or work in Peel Region completed a Peel Regional Police survey, which was developed with the Ontario Human Rights Commission and the Peel Police Services Board as part of a broader effort to help the PRP identify and address systemic racism in its organization.

Click for a full report on the survey results

The survey found that 48 percent of those who responded to the question agreed with the statement “systemic racism in policing is a problem,” and just over half (58%) agreed with the statement that policing in Peel Region is in need of reform.

“Systemic racism exists across all systems and continually affects service delivery to the communities we serve,” said Chief Nishan Duraiappah. “The results of this survey and other community consultation activities are helping us develop a thorough understanding of the experience Peel residents have with police, and that will help us implement the right remedies.”

View Survey Results

Human Rights Project survey results. Click on the image to view.

Click for raw data from the community survey

Note: Data is also available in the full survey report above.

News

MOU - Memorandum of Understanding

PRP video

PSB Board Meeting video

FAQs - Community Survey

What did you learn from the survey?

We learned there are many people in Peel Region who care deeply about the quality of policing in our community, and who feel strongly enough to take the time to share their views. Receiving more than 1,100 responses from community members, it is clear people in Peel are interested in policing in Peel and many have concerns relating to their perceptions of and experiences with police in Peel.

What specific findings are important?

Among those who took the survey, over half say policing in Peel needs to be reformed. We know systemic racism exists in the PRP. Specifically, the survey helps us understand the perceptions of people who had direct experience with the PRP within the last two years, compared to those who know someone who had a PRP interaction, and it in many cases it reveals substantially divergent views depending on the race of the respondent.
The survey results give us valuable insights into how Peel residents view public interactions with police. They give us direction into changes we need to make to address systemic racism and build public trust, such as more and better training, more diverse recruitment and hiring, and more accountability that is visible.

We also learned that over half the respondents see the Ontario Human Rights Commission’s seven guiding principles for addressing systemic racism in policing are the right foundation for the PRP’s work in this area.

  • Acknowledgement: Substantively acknowledge the reality of racial profiling, including the impact it has on individual and community well-being and trust in law enforcement, and recognize the specific impact on Indigenous peoples and racialized communities and individuals
  • Engagement: Actively and regularly engage with diverse Indigenous peoples and racialized communities to obtain frank and open feedback on the lived experience of racial profiling and effective approaches to combatting it
  • Policy guidance: Adopt and implement all appropriate standards, guidelines, policies and strict directives to address and end racial profiling in law enforcement
  • Data collection: Collect and analyze race data to identify and reduce disparity, and to manage performance
  • Monitoring and accountability: Regularly monitor racial profiling, and set robust internal accountability mechanisms at the governance, management and operational levels
  • Organizational change: Implement multi-faceted organizational change (for example, in relation to training, culture, hiring, incentive structures, etc.), consistent with the OHRC’s guide, Human rights and policing: Creating and sustaining organizational change
  • Multi-year action plan: Form anti-racist action plans featuring initiatives geared toward achieving short-term and long-term targets for advancing all of these principles 

What actions is the PRP going to take as a result of this survey?

The survey is part of a broader anti-racism initiative by the PRP. Ultimately, it will inform the legally binding recommendations the OHRC makes to the PRP to identify and address systemic racism in the Service. That initiative and relevant changes within the PRP are already well underway. 

If the PRP acknowledges it needs to build trust with the community, how can the community trust what you are saying about the survey?

The survey was conducted in collaboration with the OHRC and the Peel Regional Police Services Board. All parties had feedback to the questions asked, independently reviewed the data from the survey, and collaborated on the final report. Independent consultant, Dr. Akwasi Owusu-Bempah reviewed the findings. Raw data from the survey will be available in January 2022. The entire process has been transparent, which is important to our efforts to build trust and credibility.

The survey found that people who identified as Black and Asian had disproportionately more interactions with PRP and those interactions were disproportionately related to random stops, questioning and arrests. What does this tell you?

We know systemic racism exists within the PRP. As a result, some communities are over-policed and some are under-policed. This information will help us add training, deploy resources and recruit staff in ways that better meet the community’s needs and expectations.

What was the OHRC’s role in this? 

The PRP, OHRC and Peel Police Board have entered into a binding agreement to act on OHRC recommendations that will identify and address systemic racism. The OHRC has worked with the PRP throughout every step of this process to ensure its integrity and to ensure that it achieves its goals. 

This was an Internet survey. Does it accurately reflect the views of Peel residents? 

This was an Internet survey and therefore the results cannot be regarded as a reflection of the views of Peel residents in general. But it provides a useful view of the issues Peel residents find important, and it is also important to give Peel residents an opportunity to express their views. The survey comprised fixed-answer and open-ended answer questions to enable respondent alternatives in providing their views.

Did PRP employees respond to the survey? If so, how many, and did that skew the results in the PRP’s favour? 

The survey was open to everyone who lives or works in Peel Region, so it is likely some PRP employees responded. But that didn’t affect the issues that were identified, or the actions some people recommended for reform. Nor did it affect the ability of community residents to provide anonymous feedback to PRP. It was a valuable exercise. The responses were all anonymized, so we did not link any responses to any individuals. 

When is PRP going to release the OHRC’s recommendations?

In the first quarter of 2022. We are still engaged in the process of collecting public feedback, in collaboration with the OHRC. That feedback will help shape the OHRC’s final recommendations, which are legally binding on the PRP.

What is the purpose of the survey?

In our continuous efforts to identify and address systemic racism, the Peel Regional Police, Peel Police Services Board, and the Ontario Human Rights Commission have collaborated to develop a survey to gather community input on experiences with and perceptions of the Peel Regional Police.

How was the survey developed?

The survey is a collaboration between PRP, PPSB and the OHRC. It builds on the work that is currently underway to identify and address systemic racism in policing.

Why is Peel Police issuing this survey? 

The Peel Regional Police (PRP), the Peel Police Services Board (PPSB) and the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) committing to develop and implement legally binding remedies to identify and address systemic racism in policing, promote transparency and accountability, and enhance Black, other racialized and Indigenous communities’ trust in policing throughout Peel Region.

Within the scope of the MOU, the OHRC is providing human rights guidance to the PRP and PPSB on our multi-year human rights organizational change project, named the Human Rights Project.

As one of the steps in engaging with communities, the PRP and the PPSB in collaboration with the OHRC is issuing this survey.

How will the data collected from the survey be used? 

The data will be anonymized and reviewed separately by the PRP, independent data experts and the OHRC to look for insights and/or patterns that will inform PRP’s efforts to eliminate systemic racism.

Is this survey part of the memorandum with the OHRC?

The survey is a part of PRP’s commitment under the memorandum with the OHRC to identify and address systemic racism in Peel policing. The parties recognize that it is essential to hear from and work with Black, other racialized and Indigenous communities and allies, to consider appropriate ways to address systemic racism in policing in Peel Region.

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