NEWS

Montreal aims to curb racial profiling

01/17/2012 04:08 EST | Updated 03/18/2012 05:12 EDT

The city of Montreal is forming a committee to look into and eliminate racial and social profiling.

The group will include representatives from the Montreal Police, the Montreal Transit Corporation, and elected officials from the city and its boroughs.

Mayor Gérald Tremblay said as part of its three-year plan, the committee will examine how profiling affects public security, equal opportunity employment access, social development and the fight against poverty.

"Profiling in any shape or form is unacceptable," Tremblay said. "Because it is opposed to the value of inclusion and equality and dignity that are so near to all Montrealers."

Montreal police chief Marc Parent said there will be zero tolerance when it comes to racial profiling.

He said there will be consequences — including dismissals — for any officer found to have used racial profiling. And, he said, there will be additional training aimed at preventing the practice.

Critics say plan not enough

Some groups were critical of the plan, saying it doesn't go far enough to ensure racial profiling is eliminated.

"There seems to be a credibility gap in what the mayor is saying," said Fo Niemi, director of the Centre for Research Action on Race Relations.

He said there are numerous racial profiling complaints against Montreal police that are caught up in the legal system, and he'd like to see some action that would help those cases move forward.

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