Toward Peace, Harmony, and Well-Being: Policing in Indigenous Communities
The Expert Panel on Policing in Indigenous Communities
Policing in Indigenous communities presents challenges that are distinct from those for policing in non-Indigenous communities. These challenges are embedded within a set of cultural, social, historical, legal, political, and geographic considerations.
Recognizing these unique challenges, Public Safety Canada (PS) asked the CCA to undertake an assessment examining what could be drawn from the current evidence and knowledge about the present and future role of police services in Indigenous communities in Canada and to identify some promising and leading practices in policing that could be applied in Indigenous communities.
To address the question, the CCA convened a multidisciplinary panel of 11 experts from Canada and abroad with knowledge and experience in Indigenous law and public policy, criminology, psychiatry and mental health, and policing services.
Toward Peace, Harmony, and Well-Being: Policing in Indigenous Communities builds on the CCA’s 2014 policing report, Policing Canada in the 21st Century: New Policing for New Challenges by incorporating the latest research findings and related information available on policing in Indigenous communities. The findings emphasize the diverse considerations that inform Indigenous policing.
The approaches to policing considered in this report have broader implications related to well-being in Indigenous communities, and the ways in which Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities can form relationships based on mutual respect. The report aims to provide Indigenous community leaders, policy-makers, and service providers with the foundation to build effective and appropriate models for the future of policing in Indigenous communities.
Reflecting on all the evidence available, the Panel came to six main findings:
Over the past 30 years, a number of commissions and inquiries have had an impact on policing in Indigenous communities and on the relationships between Indigenous communities and the criminal justice system. They have often been sparked by crisis and they have highlighted inequities, and sometimes gross misconduct, in relations between Indigenous Peoples and policing and justice systems in Canada.