Canada to establish an enhanced independent review body for RCMP and CBSA

Public Safety Canada

Ottawa, Ontario

Canadians must have confidence in the agencies tasked with keeping them safe. Whether in our communities or at our borders, public trust is essential to the work of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). A central part of maintaining this trust are robust mechanisms around civilian review and police accountability.

The Minister of Public Safety, the Honourable Marco Mendicino, today introduced new legislation to establish the Public Complaints and Review Commission (PCRC), an enhanced independent review body for the RCMP and CBSA. Entitled Bill C-20, An Act establishing the Public Complaints and Review Commission and amending certain Acts and statutory instruments, it would ensure that Canadians can continue to expect consistent, fair, and equal treatment when interacting with the RCMP and CBSA.This enhanced independent review body would replace the Civilian Review and Complaints ‎Commission (CRCC), currently the review body for the RCMP. For the CBSA, it would create for the very first time independent review and a forum for complaints about the conduct of CBSA employees.

To improve the timeliness of responding to complaints, the legislation would codify timelines in which the RCMP and CBSA must respond to PCRC interim reports, reviews and recommendations. It includes a requirement for the RCMP Commissioner and CBSA President to report annually to the Minister of Public Safety on the status of the implementation of PCRC recommendations. It also requires the PCRC to collect and publish disaggregated race-based data to help assess and address systemic racism in law enforcement.

In addition to regular review of both agencies, the PCRC would also have the ability to review, on its own initiative or at the request of the Minister, any activities of the RCMP or CBSA. The only exception are activities related to national security, which are overseen by separate independent bodies.

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