Poll reveals 75% favour Toronto police wearing body cameras

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Toronto, February 5 (CINEWS): Given the death of Sammy Yatin at the hands of a Toronto police officer it comes as no surprise that 81 per cent of Torontonians in a survey responded that they believed body cameras will lead to more responsibility in the police force.
With Toronto police in the midst of a pilot project that has some officers equipped with body-worn cameras, three-quarters of the city’s residents believe all officers should be wearing the devices, a CBC News poll suggests.
Just seven per cent of Torontonians polled strongly or somewhat disagreed with equipping all police with body-worn cameras. And just five per cent disagreed that having more cameras will lead to more police accountability.
Currently, around 100 officers in some parts of the city are wearing body-worn cameras as part of a $500,000 pilot project. The Toronto Police Service Board will decide whether or not to extend the program in June.
Equipping officers who may come in contact with people in crisis with body-worn cameras was one of the key recommendations of Supreme Court Justice Frank Iacobucci’s 2014 report that called for a “zero death” police culture. The report, focusing on police use of force, was spurred by the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim by Const. James Forcillo aboard a Toronto streetcar in 2013.
Yatim’s death prompted calls for police to review how they handle confrontations involving people with a history of mental illness. The shooting was captured by cellphone cameras and distributed widely online within minutes.
Seventy two per cent of those polled say officers who get suspended from duty should be suspended without pay.

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