Nov 18, 2016

By Jane Brown

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The controversial Toronto Police practice of carding, as it is now known, comes to an end on January 1st.

Members of the Toronto Police Services Board have revised the policy to comply with Ontario wide regulations. Officers will be prohibited from arbitrarily collecting information from individuals because they are of a particular racialized group.

“It’s a step in the right direction,” said civil rights activist Knia Singh, “However front line officers have to abide by it and they have to be honest and act with integrity. If they don’t, it is corrosive. There’s (sic) a few exceptions in the policy that allow for too many grey areas, but we’re working on having those amended.”

There is also concern that police will still be allowed to access historic carding data. Police Services board member Shelley Carroll says the data is needed because of a massive class action suit against Toronto Police over the carding practice.

Carding, also known as street checks, is the police practice of stopping, questioning and documenting people not suspected of a crime. It has disproportionately targeted visible minorities, particularly young black and brown men.

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