Preventing Police Brutality In Canada Essay

2584 words - 11 pages

Early in the 17th century was when the first modern day policing was expected to have begun. Ever since the 18th century begun, incidences of police using excess force by abusing their power have been quite common. As time progressed, these wrongful actions by police have been entitled as police brutality. Police brutality is defined as" the use of excessive force used by police dealing with public... excessive force can be either physical, verbal, and/or psychological". According to this definition, whether it be arresting someone with too much force or even uttering certain statements, can all be classified as police brutality. No individual should be victimized by police officers who use ...view middle of the document...

In a statement by ex-NYPD officer O'Donnell, he states that " police officers in New York and across the country get only limited training in how to de-escalate situations...". This can be linked back to Toronto Police Service officer James Forcillo in the Sammy Yatim case. Yatim was an 18 year old mentally-ill child who was shot nine times by officers after showing a knife on a street car. Instead of attempting negotiations, police yelled orders and frightened him. It is possible to learn compassion and speak to individuals and get their cooperation as shown by a secretary named Antoinette Tuff. She talks down a mentally-ill gunman into putting down his AK-47 and preventing a massacre with no training. If she Tuff could do this, why are police officers unable to do so even with training? This shows that police officers lack training across the country, and are not familiar with certain techniques that teach officers to remain calm, and simply attempt to speak to people instead of using threats or violence. These techniques can lead to fewer deaths and less issues later on; the skills for proper communication can be acquired by better training, as will be explained later .
After individuals such as Yatim were killed, members of his family will have been left emotionally torn, members of society left in fear, and even a police officer being charged with 2nd degree murder. If officers undergo higher quality training, several unfortunate mishaps can easily be avoided with this simple additional knowledge that they can gain. According to research by the University of Alberta, it is stated that " A training program for Canadian police officers... [a] one-day course... used role-playing scenarios to teach more than 600 officers from the Edmonton Police Service how to identify mental health issues quickly and to deal with situations without using violence." The research continued by showing that " The training focused on empathy and communication skills resulting in a 40% increase in officers' ability to recognize mental health issues. The course cost $120 per officer but could save police forces thousands in the long-term." Although there should not be a price put on someone's life, the research clearly displays how a simple one-day, $120 course could prevent further casualties and save police thousands of dollars. The police force is a government service, meaning the money they get is the money collected from tax-payers. This would allow the tax-payers money to be put to other uses by the police such as more skilled officers on duty which can lead to a reduction in crime; something the excessive use of force by officers is not doing. This demonstrates how a simple, small investment in training can result in several benefits for police and citizens allowing for a safer, happier law-abiding society.
Secondly, laws are things that have existed ever since the Roman era; they help to maintain order in the world and prevent civilization from falling...

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