In 2020 the Legislative Assembly of BC appointed a Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act to:

“Examine, inquire into, and make recommendations to the Legislative Assembly on: reforms related to the modernization and sustainability of policing under the Police Act (R.S.B.C. 1996, c.367); the role of police with respect to complex social issues including mental health and wellness, addictions and harm reduction; the scope of systemic racism within BC’s police agencies; and whether there are measures necessary to ensure a modernized Police Act is consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007).” Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act

As part of their public consultation process the Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act invited British Columbians to share their views and ideas on public safety and policing through written, audio, and video submissions.

Inclusion BC and our Board of Directors, in consultation with two Criminology professors at Kwantlen Polytechnic University, were pleased to participate in the process through a written submission which offered recommendations to the Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act.

With Canada being a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), and having acceded to its Optional Protocol, our overarching recommendation to the Special Committee was for the Province of BC to align the Police Act with the UNCRPD alongside the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action.

Our submission identified opportunities to enhance equity and transparency for people with intellectual disabilities and their families when engaging with multiple layers of policing in our province and centered on three primary articles within the UNCRPD:

For each of the UNCRPD articles above, we shared with the Special Committee a perspective offered by a member of our Board of Directors which included recommendations and points for consideration.

Inclusion BC and our Board of Directors appreciated the opportunity for our organization to share our recommendations with the Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act. We look forward to further opportunities for participation and collaboration to enhance equity and transparency for people with intellectual disabilities and their families when engaging with multiple layers of policing in our province.

See our full submission: Recommendations to the Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act (PDF)