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Police carding will end by winter: province

CityNews | posted Friday, Oct 23rd, 2015

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The controversial practice of carding will end by winter, the province said Thursday.

The issue came up during a debate at Queen’s Park, sparked by a private member’s bill from NDP MPP Jagmeet Singh.

Random and arbitrary stops will be illegal by the end of the fall, said Liberal MPP Yasir Naqvi, minister of community safety and correctional service.

Outside the legislature, Naqvi confirmed his statements, the Toronto Star reported. Naqvi told the newspaper that the Liberal government will “absolutely” end the practice.

“It’s unacceptable and we will put an end to it,” he said.

Statistics show that carding, which involves police stopping individuals and collecting their personal information, disproportionality targets minorities, especially black men.

Over the summer, the provincial government said it won’t get rid of “street checks” – or “carding” as it is commonly known in Toronto – by police, but will be putting in place a standardized system for police across Ontario, in order to ensure fairness and public confidence.

At the time, Naqvi said the status quo is not acceptable and cannot continue.

“Whether a black woman in downtown Toronto, a brown-skinned man in Brampton, or a teenaged First Nations boy in Thunder Bay, wherever people in this province are being treated differently solely because of the colour of their skin, I want you to know that we have heard you,” he said.

The government then launched a series of public consultations on the issue.

Last month, Ontario’s then-ombudsman Andre Marin said carding was “wrong and illegal” and it violates the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

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