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Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity
The year 2020 marked an important call to action among police services across the globe.
The death of George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man who was murdered while in police custody, prompted a year of necessary change and awareness in policing.
Conversations surrounding Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity (EDI) began towards the latter part of 2019 for the CPS, and while the pandemic may have stalled some of these efforts, the death of George Floyd was a clear indication that EDI in policing must become a priority. His death greatly influenced the level of trust and confidence in police, resulting in a call to action for change.
In 2020, the CPS embarked on a journey to become an organization that is reflective and understanding of the communities it serves. As an organization, we are compelled to reflect on our values of equity, diversity and inclusion and the reality of the lived experiences of many diverse communities. In doing so, the CPS committed to developing an Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity Action Plan.
The following will highlight the actions that have been taken by the CPS since 2020 to become an organization that prioritizes Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity.
EDI ACTION PLAN
The CPS identified Staff Sergeant Tracey Pilon to lead the development of the EDI Action Plan. The plan was established with the intention to increase awareness of diversity issues within the CPS; ensure equitable treatment of all people; and, promote better relations between CPS employees and diverse communities. In September of 2020, a Framework for the Action Plan was presented to and endorsed by the Cornwall Police Services Board.
It is the Policy of the Cornwall Police Service to:
- Provide the fullest possible services in a prompt, fair, and equitable manner to all persons, without discrimination on the basis of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status or disability contrary to the Ontario Human Rights Code;
- Extend fair and equal treatment under the law to every community and individual without discrimination on the basis of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status, or disability contrary to the Ontario Human Rights Code;
- Maintain a respectful and co-operative relationship with all communities recognizing their racial, cultural, religious and linguistic diversity, thereby fostering the kind of community support that is essential to maintain a safer community together; and,
- Maintain a discrimination-free workplace for all members, ensure that the organization is bias-free, and that it reflects the racial diversity of the community.
One of the first actions taken as part of the framework was training in “Courageous Leadership” and “Courageous Conversations.” These training sessions were led by César Ndéma-Moussa, the Roots & Culture Canada President and Eastern Ontario’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity Director in Child Welfare. This training module touched every member of the service. The presentation addressed the roots of racism and its systemic manifestation in race and class, which have ultimately shaped the modern world. It helped employees to challenge long-held traditional beliefs and address accountability in light of growing social discourses.
Additional training has taken place since the launch of the EDI Action Plan, including:
- Virtual Diversity & Inclusion Workshop
- Courageous Leadership
- Diversity, Equity, Inclusivity Training via Children’s Aid Society of SDG
- Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Awards Webinar
- Courageous Conversations
- Addressing Systemic Racism through Data Collection Webinar
- Gender-Based Violence Through an Intersectional Lens
- Unconscious Bias: Understanding Bias to Unleash Potential
- Exploring Unconscious Bias Workshop
- Introduction to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion to new employees
- National Indigenous Peoples Day in Canada
- Kairos Blanket Exercise
- Systemic Racism Webinar
- Equity, Diversity, Inclusivity Symposium
- Ethics Program Training Application of a Diversity Lens to Policy
- Unconscious Bias
- Indigenous Awareness Training
OACP Visit to Remote Indigenous Communities
In September of 2022, Chief Spowart, being a Vice-President on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police, attended various remote Indigenous communities in Northern Ontario, alongside fellow members on the Board of Directors.
The visit served as an opportunity to improve relationships with Indigenous Police Chiefs of Ontario (IPCO) and gain a better understanding of the challenges faced by police services in Indigenous communities. The visit was also an opportunity for those in attendance to bring back the learnings and apply them at a local level, recognizing how police services can ultimately better serve Indigenous communities. In addition to improving service to Indigenous communities in Cornwall and Akwesasne, Chief Spowart has made the commitment to enhance the partnership with the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service, through greater collaboration.
Through this opportunity, Chief Spowart has also reflected on how this deeply impactful experience will have a lasting impression on her approach to leadership.
CPS EMPLOYEE CENSUS SURVEY
Another important early action of the CPS was to distribute a voluntary census survey to all employees in order to capture a baseline understanding on the diversity of our employees. This information will contribute to our efforts to understand and leverage the diversity, perspectives, and lived experiences of our employees.
In February 2021, the internal survey was made available to all CPS employees, in compliance with the Ontario Human Rights Code and Privacy Legislation. A total of 145 responses were received.
Having a clear picture of the diversity of our employees will assist us in addressing barriers in the workplace, use data to guide our future, build a sense of belonging, make informed evidence-based decisions, anticipate and/or respond to the needs of our diverse communities. Diversity is particularly important in the law enforcement context because policing is most successful when it has the support of the community it serves.
From the survey results, we were able to determine that 95 members of the CPS speak French, while several employees also indicated they speak American Sign Language, Arabic, Croatian, German, Mohawk, and Spanish, to name a few.
Four employees indicated they are First Nations, three indicated they are Metis, and five employees indicated they are mixed race Aboriginal or Indigenous.
One employee identified as being an Arabic visible minority. 13% of employees identified as having a sexual orientation other than heterosexual. 9% of employees indicated they have a disability.
When surveyed about religious beliefs, 25% of employees indicated they do not have a religious affiliation, while 46% of employees indicated they are Catholic. Other responses from employees included Protestant, Spiritual, New Age Spiritual, and Christian Orthodox.
The CPS was pleased with the results and the participation from employees to share this personal information. Surveying employees will continue to be an important element of the CPS’ EDI journey, while ensuring employee confidentiality and privacy is respected.
In the 2021 CPS Strategic Plan survey, 75% of respondents who identified as belonging to a diverse community indicated that police presence at community events is important or very important to them.
In 2022, the CPS actively worked with members of diverse communities to understand opportunities where police could be invited to attend and interact. Police were fortunate to be invited as guests to a number of various events throughout the year.
CORNWALL SPORTS FESTIVAL:
Multiple members from the CPS, including the Chief of Police, Director of Human Resources, and numerous uniformed police officers and civilians attended the event held at Optimist Park on Saturday, September 4th. The event was organized by Saint Mary Sports and spearheaded by Cornwall City Councillor, Mr. Fred Ngoundjo. Representatives of the CPS were able to talk with diverse participants of the festival about the Service, as well as discuss recruitment opportunities. Members of the CPS also enjoyed interacting with the many youth who attended as spectators to support their family members playing in the tournament. The youth were able to interact with officers, check out police cruisers and become more familiar with the CPS.
CORNWALL PRIDE FESTIVAL:
On July 9th, 2022, members of the CPS, including the Deputy Chief of Police, were proud to participate in the Cornwall Pride Festival at Lamoureux Park. The CPS escorted participants in the Pride Parade before leading festival attendees to Lamoureux Park.
On September 25th each year, the CPS is pleased to join our local francophone population in celebrating Franco-Ontarian Day. In 2022, Deputy Chief Foy proudly attended the celebration at Lamoureux Park and met with students from École secondaire catholique La Citadelle and École secondaire publique L'Héritage.
CORNWALL MALAYALI ASSOCIATION – ONAM CELEBRATION:
Chief Spowart was honoured to attend the Cornwall Malayali Association's celebration of Onam on Saturday, September 10, 2022. Chief Spowart enjoyed the opportunity to connect with our local Malayali community and learn more about this important cultural festival.
INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE GIRL:
The CPS was proud to be a participant in the International Day of the Girl event held in Cornwall on October 11th for girls aged 12 to 17. The event was held in partnership with Maison Interlude House, Seaway Valley Community Health Centre, Centre de santé communautaire de l'Estrie, Boys and Girls Club of Cornwall, as well as action ontarienne contre la violence faite aux femmes. Chief Spowart provided a virtual address to kick off the event, noting her own experiences as being a female Chief of Police, as well as the influences of today’s world and how they impact young girls, such as the Chief’s own daughter.
The event aims to celebrate girls, provide encouragement, and empower them to lead their lives knowing they can accomplish anything.
TRUTH & RECONCILIATION DAY:
Members of the CPS, including the Chief and Deputy Chief, proudly participated in the Day of Truth & Reconciliation, held on September 30th. Members wore Orange shirts as an important reminder to reflect and raise awareness to the harm caused through Residential Schools and honour all of the members of Indigenous communities who have been impacted. It is essential that we take time to listen, learn, and commit to the ongoing process of reconciliation.
CPS members attended the Orange Shirt/National Day of Truth and Reconciliation Community Gathering at Lamoureux Park that afternoon.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
On February 26th, 2021 S/Sgt. Tracey Pilon was invited to be a guest speaker at a Black History Month event, hosted by the African Caribbean International Association of Eastern Ontario (ACIAEO). At the event, S/Sgt. Pilon provided an overview of the CPS EDI Action Plan and answered questions from members of the forum.
In February of 2022, the CPS was proud to celebrate Black History Month, celebrating the achievements of Black Canadians and commemorating those who continue to advocate for change today.
Activities during Black History Month included promotion of community events, including a virtual event hosted by the African Caribbean & International Association of Eastern Ontario.
Various social media posts were shared, bringing attention to the month. The CPS also provided a spotlight biography on Constable Andrew Booth-Reddick, being a member of the Black Community. Cst. Booth-Reddick spoke about his journey in choosing a career in policing, and some of the reasons he enjoys serving the community.
SUPPORTING THE AGAPE CENTRE:
Throughout 2022, the CPS took part in several initiatives to help support our local Agape Centre. Numerous food drives took place in partnership with local grocery stores, including Baxtrom’s Your Independent Grocer and Food Basics on Second Street, to help encourage patrons to “Stuff the Cruiser” by donating non-perishable food items or making donations.
Additionally, Deputy Chief Foy participated in the Agape Centre’s “Empty Bowls” event on November 20, 2022, where attendees sampled gourmet soups and raised money to stock the shelves of the foodbank.
SUPPORTING THE SPECIAL OLYMPICS:
The CPS is proud to be an ongoing partner and supporter of Special Olympics Ontario. Special Olympics Ontario is dedicated to enriching the lives of Ontarians with an intellectual disability through sport.
Members of the CPS have been honoured to attend various Special Olympics events that have taken place at Cornwall schools. In 2022, officers attended the St. Matthew’s Secondary School Open House-Special Olympics event in support of this important cause.
In January 2022, officers also attended Cornwall Collegiate and Vocational Secondary School to join in promoting the “Choose to Include” limited edition Tim Hortons Donut. 100% of the proceeds from sales of the donut went directly to local Special Olympics community programs, supporting more than 41,000 athletes with a developmental disability across Canada.
DEVCORE – ACFO SDG PARTNERSHIP:
In late 2022, the CPS worked closely with the Association des communautés francophones de l'Ontario, de Stormont, Dundas et Glengarry (ACFO SDG) and Devcore Cornwall, after hundreds of asylum seekers began arriving in the community. The CPS has worked closely with these agencies in order to build relationships with the asylum seekers and familiarize them with how to access services and find help. Numerous presentations have been conducted with the asylum seekers, as well as police presence at multiple events and initiatives, including a Community event, alongside multiple community partners, and their Halloween Festival.
DIVERSITY CORNWALL BOARD REPRESENTATION:
In 2022, the CPS was pleased to have Constable Marie Nissan identified as a candidate for a vacancy on the Diversity Cornwall Board. Constable Nissan was interviewed and unanimously voted onto the Board, providing CPS with greater insight into how the CPS can better engage and become a better partner with Diversity Cornwall and their members.
Over the course of the last year and a half, the CPS has actively sought out opportunities to take part in presentations on the topic of EDI. Some of the presentations we have been a part of include:
- Interview with Student from Algonquin College - Student reached out as part of a project and conducted an in depth interview around the Action Plan, its implementation, data collection, training and partnerships.
- St. Lawrence College Social Service Worker Program - Teacher from the SSW Course at SLC reached out and requested a presentation on CPS’s EDI Action Plan and its importance on shaping the future in policing.
- Coalition for Unity, Respect & Equity/Equality for All (CUREA)- Presented the Action Plan to the CUREA Board.
- Block Training to CPS Employees - Introduced the EDI Action Plan to the membership and explained the role they all play in challenging traditional viewpoints.
- Facebook Live Conversation with CUREA, Mayor and Chief of Police - Participated in Facebook Live event hosted by Mayor Clement. Table top discussion with participants relating to EDI.
- African Caribbean & International Association of Eastern Ontario (ACIAEO) - Presented EDI Action Plan – CRCP has presented various topics as the request of the Association relating to public safety.
- Children’s Aid Society of SDG – Paula Maddon - Presented EDI Action Plan.
- City of Cornwall Clerk, Manon Levesque - Presented EDI Action Plan and Policy Review activities.
EDI IN STRATEGIC PLANNING
In late 2020 into the beginning of 2021, the CPS began planning the development of the 2021-2023 CPS Strategic Plan. A great emphasis was placed on ensuring that all members of the communities served by the CPS had an opportunity to participate in the plan development.
A survey was distributed between March 19, 2021 and April 22, 2021, and was made available, both electronically and through paper copies. The survey was available in French and English, and was also accessible in additional languages through the assistance of community partners.
Members of the CPS and CPS Auxiliary members attended businesses, churches, mosques, community organizations and a number of other locations to appeal for assistance in sharing the survey. The CPS was met with great support from members of the community and partnering agencies to help distribute the survey to a wide cross-section of community members.
Additionally, a quantity of cell phone users in the Cornwall area received an automated message, further inviting them to take the survey.
The CPS was pleased to receive a total of 1,477 completed surveys, in which 19.6% of respondents identified as being Indigenous or a member of a visible minority. Additionally, 9.5% of respondents identified as a member of the LGBTQ2+ community, and 13% of respondents identified as having a disability.
Some of the key trends that were noted in the survey results, included the top five crime concerns for respondents who identified as Indigenous or a visible minority. These concerns being, violence against women, the presence of drugs/dealers, sexual assault crimes, hate crimes/incidents, and fraud/identified theft.
Respondents were also surveyed about their level of trust in the CPS, which revealed similar trends among the identified groups.
When respondents were asked to rate the performance of the CPS in working with diverse communities, it was clear that there is still work to be done, with most groups rating the performance as average.
A further break down of survey results can be found at https://cornwallpolice.com/2021-2023-strategic-plan.
The data submitted through the Strategic Plan Survey will continue to assist the CPS in serving the needs of these communities over the next three years. In addition to the survey, the CPS will also be continuing to use the partnerships and contacts that have been established through the Strategic Plan outreach, to maintain and further build relationships for improved understanding of community needs.
After extensive consultations with members of the public, community partners and employees, the CPS has streamlined all input from the Strategic Plan process into strategic priorities in response to the needs of Cornwall’s evolving community.
Four major pillars were identified as the plan’s foundation over the next three years. They are: Community Engagement, Organizational Excellence, Crime Reduction & Community Safety and Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity (EDI). Embedded within each of these pillars are strategic priorities that the CPS will look to achieve by the end of 2023.
By identifying Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity as its own pillar, the CPS is emphasizing the importance of prioritizing EDI within our police service and throughout the community. Major strategic priorities over the next three years will include:
- Building trust
- Building relationships with diverse communities
- Addressing systemic barriers
- Creating a diverse workplace
- Ensuring a culturally competent membership
- Championing an inclusive organizational culture
The CPS will be reporting back to the community on our progress in executing the priorities set out in the 2021-2023 Strategic Plan.
Since 2021, members of the CPS have been actively holding “Newcomer Presentation Sessions” through Le Conseil Économique et Social d'Ottawa Carleton (CÉSOC) on safety and community policing to new Cornwall residents. These presentations are also conducted in partnership with Newcomer Employment Welcome Services (NEWS), L’Association des communautés francophones de l’Ontario, de Stormont, Dundas et Glengarry (ACFO SDG), and the Eastern Ontario Training Board (EOTB).
In 2022, several Newcomer presentations took place, greeting residents from the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Members of the CPS have engaged in an important conversation with attendees by introducing them to our community policing model, provide them with important information about their rights, how to access our services or call 911, as well as familiarize attendees with the police uniform, badges and vehicles.
These presentations have also translated into the school system, where members of the Crime Reduction and Community Partnerships Bureau have attended to meet with elementary students who have arrived internationally, in order to also familiarize them with police and how to find help if ever needed.
Diversifying talent acquisition has been a major focal point for the CPS over the last year and a half. The CPS continues to strive to promote and demonstrate the values of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. We are committed to reflecting the diversity of the community we serve and have been encouraging qualified candidates of all backgrounds and abilities to apply.
One of the ways we have improved upon our recruitment strategies is through conducting outreach to diverse populations when new job opportunities become available. Using a network of diversity-oriented community groups and organizations, when new opportunities become available, these agencies become notified and can further distribute the job posting to their networks. Additionally, all job postings are published in both French and English, and adopt EDI terminology.
Members of the CPS recruitment team have also undergone training to be able to conduct a critical analysis of applicants, with diversity at the forefront of all decision-making. This has aided our employees in ensuring all recruitment is done with considerations to EDI.
While the CPS has taken steps to enhance its recruitment strategies and diversify its talent acquisition, the work will continue into the coming years. The next steps of furthering this progress will be to work closely with diverse communities and provide them with opportunities to learn about a career in policing and the qualifications the position entails. The goal of this work will be to set potential candidates up for success in the recruitment process, by introducing them to the career qualifications, along with tools and resources that can help them become a successful candidate.
JOINT EDI COORDINATOR POSITION:
In late 2022, the CPS and the Cornwall Community Hospital began discussions about an opportunity to partner and take measurable positive action in promoting Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity (EDI) through the recruitment of an EDI Coordinator.
This shared staff resource between CPS and CCH, two of our community’s largest essential public service providers, will provide strategic guidance on EDI and help implement initiatives within both organizations, such as training, projects and outreach, to support the advancement of EDI in their respective workplaces and interactions with the public.
“During the development of the 2021-2023 CPS Strategic Plan, our Service named Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity as one of four core pillars, recognizing the need to interweave EDI into the day-to-day work of our members and ensure that it continues to be prioritized. Some of the goals within this pillar include building trust and relationships with diverse communities, addressing systemic barriers, creating a diverse workplace and ensuring a culturally competent membership. We value our partnership with CCH and look forward to the role of the EDI Coordinator in helping us better serve our community,” said Chief of Police Shawna Spowart.
Both organizations are hopeful that the new EDI Coordinator will greatly assist with advancing the work that has already been started, while recognizing there is still a lot of work left to do.
“Through our stakeholder engagement, during the development of our 2022-2027 Strategic Plan, we heard that the hospital needs to enhance its work on prioritizing the wellbeing of our people and responding equitability to the needs of our diverse patient population and staff,” said Jeanette Despatie, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cornwall Hospital.
“Cornwall Hospital is committed to delivering collaborative and compassionate care that is equitable and empowering for those it serves. This new EDI Coordinator will help ensure that CCH can deliver on our strategic priority of Building a Culture of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, and Embracing Reconciliation. We look forward to working with the CPS on this important partnership that will see two of our region’s essential service providers better meet the needs of our diverse community,” added Despatie.
The position was posted in late December for fulfillment in early January 2023.
SUMMER MENTORING PROGRAM
In the summer of 2021, the CPS shared a job opportunity for a Student Mentoring Program. The successful candidate would be required to work in the Records Department, assisting the Receptionist and Records Clerks, in addition to having the opportunity to learn about other areas of the organization, how a municipal police service works, and attend weekly mentor team meetings. It was necessary for the candidate to be returning to full-time students at a college or university in the Fall.
In early July, the CPS was pleased to announce Mr. Tyren Boots (pictured left), as the successful candidate of our Student Mentorship Position. During his mentorship, Tyren was exposed to various areas of the Cornwall Police Service, all the while amazing our employees with his eagerness to learn, willingness to help and positive attitude.
As a resident of Akwesasne, Tyren was able to expose and teach CPS employees about Indigenous customs and traditions. His time with the CPS was equally as beneficial to our employees, providing members with a great deal of knowledge and understanding.
At the end of his term, Tyren returned to the Marian University of Wisconsin, where he is completing a double Major in Criminology and Psychology, with aspirations to later pursue a career in policing. He is also a member of the University's hockey and lacrosse teams.
The CPS is thankful for Tyren’s time with our police service, along with his hard work and dedication. We wish Tyren all the best in his future endeavours.
Meet Rahul Gomez.
Rahul joined the Cornwall Police Service as the successful candidate for our Student Mentorship Opportunity posted in the Spring of 2022.
Born in Trivandrum, Kerala, India, Rahul completed his Masters in Physics and was a high school teacher prior to moving to Canada in 2021 to pursue a diploma as an Environmental Technician at St. Lawrence College.
Since moving to Cornwall, Rahul also works as a security officer at the Cornwall Community Hospital, and maintains other part-time job opportunities. Outside of work, he coaches U18 soccer locally, is an active volunteer of the Canadian Red Cross and was formerly a board member for the St. Lawrence College Student Union.
When Rahul saw the posting for the student mentorship opportunity with CPS, he became eager to apply, as one of his aspirations is to pursue a career in policing.
Since beginning the mentorship program, Rahul was exposed to several areas of the CPS, including the Court Bureau, Records Department, Dispatch, Identification Unit, and Community Patrol to name a few. He indicated that was an incredible experience and has helped him gain knowledge in various areas of policing, that he hopes to apply to his future career. Rahul has also been a voice in his community for helping to educate and share information about police, to help international students like him become more informed about laws and police activities.
While Rahul may have many takeaways from his experience with the CPS, our members have very much appreciated the opportunity to work with him and learn more about his experiences. An extremely charismatic individual, Rahul is known for putting a smile on the faces of employees across the Service with his great sense of humor and strong work ethic. His passion for helping others and becoming involved shined through during his time with the CPS and he will certainly be missed around the station!
The CPS would like to thank Rahul for all of his hard work and dedication. We wish you all the best in your future endeavors!
INVESTIGATING HATE-BASED INCIDENTS & CRIME
As part of its EDI journey, the CPS identified the need to enhance its capacity in order to conduct investigations of hate-based incidents and crimes.
Since this time, the CPS has designated Detective Constable Gary Lee and Detective Constable Brian Langlois as the officers responsible for investigating and following-up all hate-based incidents.
These officers have received specialized training, enhancing their ability to review all incidents that may be a criminal offence or a hate-based incident with a view towards supporting the victim, educating the offender and ensuring the incident has been properly classified in the police database. The officers are also responsible for working closely with dispatchers and police officers to provide education and training in order to ensure incidents are handled and fully-investigated using a holistic approach.
A hate or bias motivated crime is defined as a criminal occurrence committed against a person or property, which is motivated by hate/bias or prejudice based on race, national or ethnic origin, language, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation or any other similar factor.
Non-criminal hate incidents involve the same characteristics as hate/bias crimes, but do not meet the threshold to be classified as criminal under Canada’s Criminal Code. Given the nature of these incidents and their potential to generate widespread fear in affected communities, police have an important supportive role to play when responding to such occurrences.
The collection of data related to race-motivated incidents is an area the CPS is actively looking to improve upon. These incidents are captured as a reportable statistic within the CPS Records Management System. One of the ways the CPS is improving the way we track these incidents, is by assigning the Hate Crime Investigator to review all incidents and ensure they are properly classified within our system.
The CPS has undertaken efforts as part of its Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity Action Plan to improve relationships with diverse communities and encourage the reporting of incidents to police. Designated Hate Crime Investigators continue to conduct presentations to diverse groups and inform them about the various ways they can contact police for assistance and the importance of doing so.
The Hate Crime Investigator is a critical role for ensuring the victim is receiving necessary support and resources, while also ensuring any involved individuals or suspects are educated, regardless of whether or not the matter is criminal in nature. It further allows for greater oversight in ensuring officers are investigating these incidents to the fullest extent.
As a result of numerous trust-building efforts, including presentations, public education, social media campaigns, etc., the CPS is reporting a 129% increase in hate crime/incidents reported to police in 2022 from 2021. This equates to a total of 32 unique incidents reported to police in 2022, with the majority of the incidents stemming from incidents of hate towards the complainant and/or victim’s race/ethnicity, followed by religion, and then sexual orientation.
In 2022, a total of 6 individuals were charged with hate crime-related offences.
The CPS is cognizant of the fact that there needs to be a lot of work done to improve our relationship with diverse communities and develop the relationship to a point where communities feel comfortable reporting to police; however, we are hopeful that the increase in reporting in 2022 representants a significant improvement.
We are hopeful that with the continued execution of the Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity Action Plan, we can build a better relationship with the diverse communities we serve and foster a culturally competent membership.
The CPS has implemented EDI into its internal transfers and promotions processes. This has been done by developing competency-based criteria as a means to ensure employees are competent in EDI and how it applies to their work, as a qualification for any promotion or transfer in the organization.
This allows CPS employees to truly be cognizant of how EDI applies to the work that they do and how they execute the values of EDI in their everyday responsibilities.
In 2023, the CPS will be looking to implement a new electronic method for conducting employee appraisals. In 2022, a significant amount of work was conducting while in the planning stages of the system’s development. Once it becomes active in 2023, supervisors and employees will reflect on how CPS employees have applied EDI into their day-to-day work and report on specific incidents, actions or behaviours in which the employee promotes it throughout the organization and within the community.
DIVERSITY LENS IN POLICY:
Since undertaking training in order to review policies using an EDI lens, all policy development or modifications are completed by applying this lens. Practices are being established to review all policies and procedures through a Diversity Lens. Approximately 127 policies were reviewed while applying an EDI lens in 2022.
As we look ahead to 2023, the CPS is eager to continue to develop new ways of engaging diverse communities. We recognize that while efforts have been made to prioritize equity, diversity and inclusivity, there is still much to be done.
Community outreach and engagement has been identified as an important priority for 2023. While the CPS has made strides with increasing education and awareness surrounding EDI internally, we must also turn to members of the diverse communities we serve in order to build greater trust and relationships.
The COVID-19 pandemic created barriers and challenges with connecting to the community. As we exit the pandemic, we are eager to engage these communities in a truly effective way, where we can come together in the same place and have these honest and important conversations.
Some of the initiatives that we look forward to achieving in 2023
- Listening Tables
- Enhancing data collection surrounding diverse recruitment
- Implementation of Body Worn Cameras to instill greater trust and accountability
- Identify physical barriers for individuals who attend the police station
- Building upon existing strategies
This is a summary of the work of the CPS in the year 2022 towards becoming an organization that is reflective and understanding of the communities it serves. While the work has only just begun, the CPS is eager to continue to execute actions and positive changes within our organization and throughout the community, in order to further build trust, enhance our relationship with diverse communities, address systemic barriers and create a diverse workplace, with a culturally competent membership.
We look forward to continuing to serve the communities of Cornwall and developing new ways of engaging diverse populations.
For more information on this and other CPS initiatives, please check our website and follow our social media pages for all future updates.