The Committee to Stop Targeted Policing is organizing a media event on this day to raise the issue of how police treat members of our communities across the City of Toronto. Police violence DOES happen here. Only when it is recognized as a serious problem will we be able to stop it. The Committee wants to get together to get the message out. Any form of police harassment, intimidation and physical violence are not acceptable.
The police argue that deployment strategies such as last summer's Community Action Policing (CAP) target 'areas' not 'individuals'. All our evidence is that the real targets are people: people who are homeless or poor, immigrants, people of colour, First Nations people, young men and women, people with mental health issues, those who use substances and gays and lesbians (and prostitutes and political activists!!)
At 11:00 am on March 15, we will gather in the south-east corner of Allen Gardens. We will present a map of Toronto that shows many of the 'hot spots' where individuals and groups have experienced police intimidation, harassment, violence and death. We are inviting organizations and groups such as yours to help us identify areas/locations in Toronto that should be marked because they are significant for individual or groups of people in your community. There will be speakers adding their experience and their calls to action to the event.
Call or fax Helen Victorous at (tel)416-703-8807 ext 2; (fax) 416-703-8953 or Susan Bender at (tel) 416-921-9751; (fax) 416-921-5233. Give us a location and the story it represents. Or, come and mark the spot during the event on March 15. Please call and let Helen or Susan know you will participate on March 15.
The Committee to Stop Targeted Policing is made up of community members, activists and agency workers who came together last summer because of serious concerns about the effect of Community Action Policing on people with whom we work and live. We have gathered many stories of people who are too frightened to make formal complaints or who have experienced different kinds of police violence so often without feeling anything can stop it. We have used this information in deputations to city councillors, committees and the police.
We are committed to stopping re-funding of CAP, to building public awarencess and community action around police issues and to fighting to put city funds into solutions that actually benefit communities such as housing, health and recreation programs.
Committee to Stop Targeted Policing