Thank you, MP Sikand. I appreciate the comments and the totality of it.
I will first say that what keeps every police leader up at night is the individual actions of their officers. The front-end investment in making sure we hire the best to do the best and build an environment and a culture in which they can act appropriately is what is within our control.
We would all agree that we fully support.... When an individual officer has a misconduct or criminal activity, that is just as upsetting for me as it is for the general public. We have real confidence, and there have been several reports on the independent oversight that's available for officers' actions. One of the problems we're facing here in Ontario is with expediency and transparency in those two processes. For some of them we can dispense discipline, but for some we depend on independent bodies of the province.
In the interim, I think the task at hand for every chief is to move beyond what we've seen as a traditional model, in which we've hired an individual because they looked at the recruiting poster and it looked pretty amazing and then they started their career and spent 25 or 30 years unnurtured. I say “unnurtured” from the standpoint of being invested in, in terms of culture development, leadership and emphasis on systemic paradigms around them that ensure that equity, diversity and inclusion are the lens.
As somebody with lived experience who, as an immigrant, entered policing 25 years ago, I can tell you that it has changed. I've seen it with my own eyes. As a racialized officer wearing a uniform and belonging to the broader Tamil community, I've seen the impact of the institution of policing. It has evolved, and I think our task at hand is to have a way forward, a systemic change road map that includes not just equity, diversity and inclusion, but also culture change, engagement, technology to support it, modernized policing technologies and—I'll keep saying it—a real emphasis on a human rights-centred focus, which has not been inherent thus far.
Those things need to be communicated, and in time we will see the needle shift. That is my commitment to my community, as it is of every chief, I would say, in this province and country.