What do we gain by including race on Alberta driver’s license?

What do we gain by including race on Alberta driver’s license?Identifying Canadians by race on their everyday documents is divisive and discriminatory In response to the Alberta government’s redesign of driver’s licenses to prevent counterfeiting, the majority of Edmonton Police Commission (EPC) members have weighed in with an additional proposal: That the racial identity of Albertans be included on their driver’s licenses. The EPC’s justification…

Can we trust organizations with our facial images?

Whoever owns the camera has access to the surveillance

Can we trust organizations with our facial images?The benefits of facial recognition technology (FRT) are everywhere. In medical settings, therapists utilize facial scans to diagnose autism early. In the public safety sector, officers use FRT to apprehend dangerous criminals. The technology offers undeniable advantages, but privacy concerns and limitations must be addressed. When your iPhone takes a picture instead of asking for…

Did the government pressure Lucki and the RCMP to do their bidding?

If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Trudeau, it’s that he has a habit of dancing with the devil

Did the government pressure Lucki and the RCMP to do their bidding?The Trudeau government’s most recent scandal, involving RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki, raises many questions and has produced few answers. In particular: Did the federal government pressure Lucki to do their bidding during a terrible shooting that rocked our country to its very core? On April 18 and 19, 2020, lone gunman Gabriel Wortman went on…

National research aimed at reforming Canada’s justice system

Experts to examine systemic problems, make evidence-based recommendations

National research aimed at reforming Canada’s justice systemA research team led by a University of Alberta scholar has received nearly $2.5 million in new federal funding for a national research project aimed at reforming the Canadian justice system. The team, headed by sociologist Sandra Bucerius and including the United Way and academic experts on the court and prison systems from across Canada, was awarded a Partnership Grant from…

Fort Mac wildfire smoke exposure affected RCMP officers’ lung function

Study suggests need for more consistent protective measures for those on the front lines of wildfires

Fort Mac wildfire smoke exposure affected RCMP officers’ lung functionA study on the health of RCMP officers who were deployed to the Fort McMurray wildfires in 2016 has found that their airway function was compromised in the first three months after deployment. An analysis of health data from 218 officers revealed that the small airways in their lungs underwent structural changes after they were…

Each loss of a police officer is a tragic indictment of social failure

Policing is fraught with physical dangers that most of us never see. Then there's the psychological trauma

Each loss of a police officer is a tragic indictment of social failureThe attack on the United States Capitol in Washington and its aftermath have taken a toll. Unfortunately, the Jan. 6 incident will remain remote and extraordinary for most. The incident has been politicized, sensationalized and reconstructed, but its tragic impact on those on the front lines is undeniable. Metropolitan Police Officer Kyle DeFreytag was found…

Rather than defund the police, rethink its core functions

Less of an officer's time should be spent on functions that don’t involve protecting the public

Rather than defund the police, rethink its core functionsRising crime rates have required Canadian police forces to reconcile managing their budgets with fighting crime. It’s not an easy balance to strike. Yet there is a simple way to save hundreds of millions of dollars: re-think the division of labour for police. Modern police officers receive extensive training to carry out tasks requiring an…

The huge challenge of holding police accountable

Too many police officers across the U.S. have been complicit by failing to intervene during their colleagues’ egregious misconduct

The huge challenge of holding police accountableThe trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd exposed Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo and forced him to give evidence and account for – or, more correctly, reject – Chauvin’s actions. The televised trial, with testimony from other police officers, including Arradondo, was an extraordinary event. Chavin was found guilty on all…

Why I do not support the Black Lives Matter movement

Why I do not support the Black Lives Matter movementThe phrase “Black Lives Matter,” as I understand it, can be interpreted in three ways. First, one can consider it to be a philosophical statement affirming and acknowledging that, in the face of current and historical oppression, there is inherent value in the lives and experiences of people of African descent. Second, it represents a…

Alberta’s rising crime rate begs more policing, not less

'Defund the police’ movement does nothing to address the root causes of criminality

Alberta’s rising crime rate begs more policing, not lessThe year is not yet over, and Calgary has already recorded more than 26 homicides, after 20 in 2019. Edmonton has witnessed a 90 per cent spike in assaults with weapons or causing bodily harm. Unbelievably, rather than tackling this escalating violence head-on, officials have joined a utopian crusade against police. Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson…
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