Audio: Thunder Bay police board apologizes, pledges to improve police-Indigenous relations – CBC

by ahnationtalk on January 14, 201934 Views

Sunday reconciliation ceremony acknowledged board ‘failed’ Indigenous people, heard calls to move forward

Jan 14, 2019

The civilian oversight board for the Thunder Bay Police Service has publicly acknowledged and apologized for systemic racism in the organization and the local force, and is pledging to work together with the entire community to move forward.

That was at the core of a “reconciliation circle” held in the city on Sunday at the Ka Na Chi Hih centre on the city’s south side. In addition to issuing the formal apology, officials heard suggestions from the community on how best to go about repairing the relationship between police and Indigenous people — one that Sen. Murray Sinclair called an “emergency” in his review of the civilian board tasked with overseeing the police.

“As hard as it is to say, we have to acknowledge that there is systemic racism in the board and in the police service,” police board administrator Thomas Lockwood told the crowd of about 300 people. “Having said that, on behalf of the board, I wish to apologize to each and every member of the Indigenous community of Thunder Bay for the existence of systemic racism.”

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