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The Toronto Police Service must develop a strong policy around Taser use that goes far beyond the requirements outlined in the Ontario guidelines. The policy must also ensure meaningful accountability and strict disciplinary measures for when officers use Tasers carelessly and without sufficient justification.
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French police had to use a stun gun to take down an aggressive monkey that was running amok in a Marseilles neighbourhood, its rampage fuelled in part by chocolate given to it by children, according t...
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Iacobucci clearly believes that the carefully restricted use of Tasers could lessen the chances of lethal outcomes in these kinds of clashes, but he wants to see the experiment monitored closely to see whether he's right. He also wants either body cameras or Taser-mounted cameras to accompany Taser use as part of the experiment.
How long does it take a new immigrant to be profiled in Montreal? Before you hazard a guess, place "black male" in front of immigrant and "racially" in front of profiled. The answer in my husband's case? One week. Bob crossed an intersection beside two white pedestrians. Singled out by a white, French-speaking police officer, Bob was asked to produce his identification without an explanation of his "offense." By the way, the two white pedestrians with whom Bob crossed the intersection were not stopped and interrogated.
I first examined the idea of equipping beat cops with cameras nearly four years ago when six Liberal senators examined the state of the RCMP. An incredible number of citizens are pointing their own cameras at police during confrontations these days. Without that kind of investment, trigger-happy Tasering will continue.
If the government would take a few steps to improve the odds that Tasers will be properly used, even the most liberal-minded among us should welcome their expanded role as an alternative to the use of guns. They can lead to much more positive outcomes in serious confrontations than otherwise might be the case.
Police are not social workers, they are not psychiatrists, they are not therapists. The police are tasked with keeping the community at large safe. This is a complicated subject that has society divided and the law enforcement and mental health communities are struggling to find common ground.
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Though incidences of Taser-related deaths have fallen out of the spotlight of late, a new study links the devices with death. If death is a possible consequence of Taser use, particularly when it comes to individuals who may have mental health or drug abuse issues, shouldn't that suggest much more cautious use of these devices?