This month, Toronto Police Service (TPS) released data demonstrating their disproportionate enforcement and use of force against Black people.
Black people and Black communities don’t need data or statistics to confirm their lived experience. This release of race-based statistics on police officers’ use of force and strip-searching, only reaffirms what we have always known; that Black people have long been disproportionately stopped, harassed, harmed, and killed by Toronto police; 230% more likely, to be exact.
At the last Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) Convention, delegates voted to, “re-imagine alternatives to police services: decriminalization, disarmament, and demilitarization; redistribute overfunded police budgets towards public services in the communities, explore community-driven, community-led solutions to community safety and well-being work towards the end of police brutality and the killings of Black and Indigenous people, address systemic anti-Black racism/anti-racism and create a just and safe society for our members and our communities.”
The recent TPS proposal of research, discussions, and more empty promises are not and have never been enough. The OFL calls for transparency, accountability, and large-scale reform of dysfunctional police policies.
The OFL joins Black activists and communities to reject the TPS apology. Instead, we demand an immediate defunding of the police, and end of police brutality on Black, Indigenous, queer, racialized, disabled, and poor people.