President of IPCO: Federal Court Decision Vindicates Position of Indigenous Police Services

The Indigenous Police Chiefs of Ontario (“IPCO”) welcome yesterday’s landmark decision of Justice Gascon of the Federal Court. They see it as only the beginning in their continued push for equitable Indigenous policing. As stated in the press advisory released by IPCO yesterday, Justice Gascon’s decision ordered that funds flow to three Indigenous police services (APS, T3PS, and UCCM) who have been without funding since March 31, 2023, and relieved them of compliance with discriminatory clauses in section 6 of the Terms and Conditions of the First Nations and Inuit Policing Program (“FNIPP”).

In the words of IPCO President, Chief of Police Kai Liu:

“We knew that we could not sign another funding agreement that was based on the discriminatory clauses found in section 6 of the Terms and Conditions, and we are overjoyed that the funding will flow again without these conditions attached.”

A copy of IPCO’s press advisory is included below, along with Justice Gascon’s decision.

Justice Gascon also declared that:

“… [Public Safety Canada] did not consistently follow its duty to act honourably and in the spirit of reconciliation as it kept insisting on the impossibility to negotiate the Terms and Conditions and the prohibitions they contain. […] Canada always has an obligation to act in ways that maintain the honour of the Crown vis-à-vis Indigenous peoples and that are in line with the objective of reconciliation. PSC’s omissions in that respect in the context of the renewal of the funding agreements of the Three Police Services is another element weighing in favour of IPCO on the balance of convenience” (paragraph 174 of Decision).

Related Documents:

Media Coverage: 

Colin Freeze, The Globe and Mail (June 30, 2023) – “Judge orders Ottawa to fund Ontario Indigenous police forces”

CBC News (June 30, 2023) – “In major ruling, feds to extend funding for Indigenous police services”

NetNewsLedger (June 30, 2023) – “Federal Court Grants Interim Relief to Ontario’s Indigenous Police Services”

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