CBSA Review Body
Branch / Agency: CSCCB
- Effective civilian oversight is central to maintaining public confidence in law enforcement agencies and the rule of law.
- The public expects and should receive consistent, fair and equal treatment when dealing with law enforcement agencies.
- The Government will re-introduce — at the earliest opportunity — legislation to enhance civilian oversight of our law enforcement agencies, for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Canada Border Services Agency.
- We will cement, in law, improved standards for responding to public complaint and review investigations.
- We will act to address the impacts of systemic racism and discrimination in the criminal justice system.
- I look forward to working with the committees, and through the parliamentary process, to ensure that we develop the best possible legislation to serve all Canadians.
In Budget 2019 the Government proposed to amend the Canada Border Services Agency Act, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act and other Acts, as required, to expand the Civilian Review and Complaints Commission (CRCC) to act as an independent review body for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Canada Border Services Agency.
The Budget 2019 funding profile included $14.12 million for expansion of the CRCC and $10.30 million for review mechanism support for CBSA over the next five years, totaling $24.42 million with an ongoing amount of $4.01 million for CRCC and $2.82 million for CBSA ongoing.
On January 27, 2020, the Minister of Public Safety introduced Bill C-3, which would have expanded the CRCC’s mandate to handle reviews and complaints for both the CBSA and the RCMP.
Bill C-3 passed first reading at the House of Commons, but, due to delays related to the Covid-19 pandemic and the prorogation of Parliament in August 2020, the Bill died on the order paper.
On September 23, 2020, the Speech from the Throne (SFT) committed the Government to take steps to ensure that the strong hand of criminal justice is used where it is needed to keep people safe, but not where it would be discriminatory or counterproductive. The SFT indicated the Government will:
- Introduce legislation and make investments that take action to address the systemic inequities in all phases of the criminal justice system, from diversion to sentencing, from rehabilitation to records;
- Move forward on enhanced civilian oversight of our law enforcement agencies,
including the RCMP;
- Modernize training for police and law enforcement, including addressing standards around the use of force;
- Move forward on RCMP reforms, with a shift toward community-led policing; and
- Accelerate work to co-develop a legislative framework for First Nations policing as an essential service.
Officials are developing advice on CRCC proposals for amendments to the former C-3 — including for adequate CRCC resourcing — and on other amendments to the RCMP Act and other acts that could be considered to address SFT and Government commitments to enhance civilian oversight.
Prepared by: David Thelen, A/Director, LEBS, CSCCB, 613-878-0424 and Darryl Sitka, Senior Director, SPPD, CSCCB 613-558-9708
Approved by: Trevor Bhupsingh, A/ADM, CSCCB, 613-990-2703
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