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Together as one: 2018 community engagement report

From: About the Commission

The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) recognizes that a strategic, meaningful, consistent, accessible and sustainable approach to stakeholder engagement strengthens its mandate to promote and enforce Ontario’s Human Rights Code (Code).

In 2017, the OHRC established a new Community Advisory Group (CAG) under section 31.5 of the Code. In 2018, the OHRC approved a new Community Engagement Strategy, Communities for change, and released the Strategy along with its 2017 Inaugural Community Advisory Group Summit Report. The OHRC remains committed to the core activities outlined in Communities for change.

This report offers highlights of our engagements with CAG members throughout the year, including during our second annual CAG summit.

A Collective Impact: Interim report on the inquiry into racial profiling and racial discrimination of Black persons by the Toronto Police Service

From: Public interest inquiry into racial profiling and discrimination by the Toronto Police Service

In November 2017, the OHRC launched its inquiry into racial profiling and racial discrimination of Black persons by the TPS to help build trust between the police and Black communities. The goal of the inquiry was to pinpoint problem areas and make recommendations. This Interim Report describes what the OHRC has done to date. It provides findings relating to SIU investigations of police use of force resulting in serious injury or death, describes the lived experiences of Black individuals, and offers highlights of legal decisions.

To dream together: Indigenous peoples and human rights dialogue report

This report summarizes key points of the discussion and recommendations arising from the three-day Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights Dialogue. It features the collective wisdom of Indigenous Elders, knowledge keepers, academics, political and government leaders, advocates, lawyers, policy makers and activists. Representatives of the OHRC, Human Rights Legal Support Centre, Social Justice Tribunals of Ontario, and the Canadian Human Rights Commission also took part.

Communities for Change: Community Engagement Strategy & 2017 Inaugural Community Advisory Group Summit Report

In 2015-2016, the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) undertook a strategic planning process that involved extensive conversations with nearly 300 people representing over 80 organizations across Ontario. By far, the strongest theme that emerged was the need to implement a strategic, meaningful, consistent, accessible and sustainable approach to stakeholder engagement. 

Interrupted childhoods: Over-representation of Indigenous and Black children in Ontario child welfare

When child welfare authorities remove children from their caregivers because of concerns about abuse or neglect, it can be traumatic and tragic for everyone involved – children, their families and even their communities. Being admitted into care comes with far-reaching consequences that can have a negative impact on children’s future ability to thrive. It is an unfortunate reality that some children need to be placed in care to keep them safe. But too often, for First Nations, Métis, Inuit, Black and other racialized families, being involved with the child welfare system and having a child removed is fraught with concerns that the system is not meeting their or their children’s needs, is harmful, and may be discriminatory.

With learning in mind

In 2016, the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) wrote to public colleges and universities in Ontario asking them to implement six specific measures to reduce systemic barriers to post-secondary education for students with mental health disabilities. This report describes the systemic barriers identified by the OHRC, the modifications to post-secondary institutions’ policies and procedures requested by the OHRC, and the institutions’ self-reported progress in implementing the requested changes.

Under suspicion: Research and consultation report on racial profiling in Ontario

May 3, 2017 - During the consultation, we heard many perspectives and experiences. We heard concerns about racialized and Indigenous peoples being subjected to unwarranted surveillance, investigation and other forms of scrutiny, punitive actions and heavy-handed treatment. We also tried to explore other, less well-understood forms of racial profiling, which may be systemic in nature. This report presents what we learned about institutional policies, practices, prediction and assessment tools, and decision-making processes, which may seem neutral but may nonetheless amount to systemic racial profiling. 

OHRC Response to the Race Data and Traffic Stops in Ottawa Report

November 26, 2016 - The OPS’s Traffic Stop Race Data Collection Project (TSRDCP) arose as a result of a human rights complaint, in which a young Black man alleged that he experienced racial profiling by OPS officers. As part of the settlement, the OPS agreed that its officers would collect race-based data on traffic stops for two years beginning in 2013. The OPS fully complied with the settlement and even went beyond what was required in its data collection efforts, resulting in a comprehensive police data collection initiative. The research findings that have arisen from the data collection are alarming and are consistent with racial profiling.

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