Police diversity fails to reflect population, but does it really matter?

POLICEPeriodically news outlets investigate the obvious- like police forces not reflecting the population it polices. To many reading these prize worthy investigations, it would seem like a scathing indictment of the beleaguered police force.

This week the CBC published its findings:

  • All major law enforcement agencies across the country with the exception of Halifax fails to reflect their communities’ diversity among their ranks, leaving large swaths of visible minorities and Indigenous populations without representation.
  • While 57 per cent of Peel region, outside Toronto, is diverse, its police force has only 19 per cent non-white officers.
  • 54 cent of Vancouverites are from minority groups, whereas 22 per cent of its police force match that profile.
  • For York region, also neighboring Toronto, that ratio is 44 per cent for the population, but 17 per cent for the police force.
  • In Edmonton, 35 per cent of its citizens are visible minorities or Indigenous, yet those groups are represented in less than 10 per cent of its police force.
  • In Nunavut, 12 per cent of the police force is Aboriginal, but the territory is almost 90 per cent Indigenous.

While it would certainly be nice to have more diversity not just in police forces across the land but also in the Canadian Armed Forces which is very Lily White. There needs to be an investigation into the hiring practices of the Canadian Armed Forces. A good start to an investigation into the lack of diversity in the Canadian Armed Forces would find out why ethnic immigrants not apply in greater numbers.

What these ‘investigations’ don’t tell us is the ethnic breakdown of applicants and if they were not selected was it because qualifications were an issue?

Police forces need to have more diversity, no doubt about it, but most law abiding citizens aren’t so concerned with the color of policeman’s skin, the public is more concerned with issues of fairness. And having more ethnic representation doesn’t always mean much in the scheme of things. Do police officers perform a great job of keeping us all safe regardless of our ethnicity? Most Canadians coast to coast of all ethnicities would broadly agree that they sleep well at night knowing that security is maintained by thorough professionals. – CINEWS

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1 Comment

  1. rajkall@yahoo.com
    July 16, 2016 at 8:46 pm Reply

    Of course diversity should be reflected in all spheres from coast to coast!

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