Update: Remaining sections of #carding regulations come into force today

This is an update on the Carding Regulations (O Reg 58/16: Collection of Identifying Information in Certain Circumstances – Prohibition and Duties) (“Regulations”). On January 1, 2017, several sections come into force (i.e., the sections become “official law”). These sections include:


Throughout the coming days, we will be releasing more detailed discussions, analysis, and comments and concerns on the above sections. Stay tuned!

For now, we have included a general outline on the above-mentioned sections with our general comments and concerns on what this means now that it has become law. What do you think about these regulations? Comment below or comment on our Facebook page!

Despite persons and other entities like policing agencies saying otherwise, there is nothing in these Regulations that suggest a policing agency must create a carding practice. In other words, policing agencies that insist they must have carding in place because that is what the carding regulations dictate is a false requirement. The carding regulations merely give direction to policing agencies that do develop carding practices. Thus, there is nothing in the regulations that state policing agencies require carding practices to conduct policing in communities.

There are other instances in the Regulations that refer to the January 1, 2017 deadline. This includes Section 2 (or the Application – information collection section), and Section 12 (or the Policies and Procedures) that the Police Boards and Minister must develop regarding several matters.

Section 2 outlines that the Regulations only apply to the collection of identifying information on or after January 1, 2017. Information collected prior to this date is regulated by Section 12(1) and Section 13(1). Section 12(1) outlines that Police Boards and the Minister must develop policies regarding the “retention of, access to, and disclosure of information collected before January 1, 2017 with respect to which this Regulation would have applied had the collection taken place on January 1, 2017.” This implies a retroactive application for policies developed pertaining to the collection of identifying information prior to January 1, 2017. Section 13(1) outlines that the chief of police must also develop procedures regarding Section 12(1) (i.e., policies and procedures of the Board and Minister). It is not clear if the policies developed by the Board and Minister must be the same as the policies and procedures as the chief of police.

Prior to January 1, 2017, we engaged in an in-depth analysis on the Regulations on our website: www.btllaw21.com.

You can read the specific analysis on the above sections in the links below (but we will be releasing such details throughout the week as well):

  • Sections 5-9
  • Section 11
    • Section 11: Chiefs of police must ensure training
      • Concerns/Comments: While the regulation says that chiefs of police must ensure every police officer who attempts to collect identifying information undergoes training must be trained in how to avoid bias, discrimination and racism when providing police services, other sections in the regulation indicate that racialized persons can still be targeted on the basis of race (in conjunction with other identifying markers).
  • Sections 14-17
    • Section 14: Annual report
      • Concerns/Comments: The annual report outlines details and data collected under the carding regulations (i.e., number of attempted collections or number of times a police officer relied on an express provision not do something required under section 6). Presumably, police officers can still discriminate against certain groups because the report does not account for number of discriminated attempts, just disproportionate attempts which are justified if explained away by relevancy. This raises the question: What is relevant under this regulation in the context of policing?
    • Section 15: Chiefs of police must review practices and report
      • Concerns/Comments: This entire section depends on the Boards’ or the Commissioners’ directions to chiefs of police which may not address the arbitrariness inherent in carding practices.
    • Section 16: Chiefs of police must make records available
      • Concerns/Comments: This only applies to requests by the Minister.
    • Section 17: Review of Regulation
      • Concerns/Comments: A review of these regulations must be conducted by January 1, 2019 and the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services must ensure that the person who conducts the review consults with the Minister Responsible for Anti-Racism.

Tell us what you think about these regulations: How do you feel about the Regulations? Do you think the Regulations are honest in their intentions and purpose? Leave a comment below or comment (and “like”) on our Facebook page.


#BTLLAW21 ROUND-UP FEATURING: #InternationalDayToEndViolenceAgainstSexWorkers #MigrantWorkers #Carding #CrisisInCorrections

This week’s roundup is a mix of important victories (re: #MigrantWorkers); unfortunate setbacks (re: #LegalAidOntario); tragedy signalling the need for urgent reform (re: #CrisisinCorrections); and thought-provoking dialogue (re: #SexWork). Our weekly round-up contains some of the content that caught our attention this past week:

International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

Immigration Detention

  • 15 people have died in immigration detention in Canada since 2000; 3 of them in 2016. Sign this petition to end immigration detention. #Not1more
  • Desmond Cole speaks with Karin, an organizer with the End Immigration Detention Network (audio).

Migrant Workers / Refugees

  • 4-in, 4-out’ rule for temporary foreign workers scrapped! Migrant workers who have worked in Canada for 4 years no longer have to wait 4 years to return.
  • December 18 is the annual International Migrants Day – sign this petition to continue advancing the rights of migrant workers; call for permanent status on landing!
  • Check out this new online tool, produced by the University of Ottawa Refugee Assistance Project, for refugee support workers and those who assist refugee claimants in preparing for their refugee hearing.

Carding / Racial Profiling/ Policing / Prisons


 Upcoming deadlines


#BTLLAW21 ROUND-UP FEATURING: #December6, #carding, #enddetention and #ViolaDesmond

This past week, Twitter and other (social) media outlets really took to discussing issues such as immigration detention, carding, the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women in Canada and #ViolaDesmond.

Here is our round-up:


December 6 – National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women in Canada:

Police Accountability

Human Rights

Budget Cuts and Funding


Anti-Black Racism



Upcoming Deadlines:

!!CONGRATS to Naomi for being recognized as an Everyday Political Citizen!!

#BTLLAW21 ROUND-UP FEATURING: #carding, compensation for Black Nova Scotians and policing

Discussions about carding have not ceased, and rightfully so.  There has also been a lot of discussion on race data collection, compensation for Black Nova Scotians, racial profiling, policing, solitary confinement, racism in schools, marijuana laws and much, much more.

Here are some media articles that we would like to share this week:



Policing, Police Oversight and Inquests

Race Data Collection and Racial Profiling

Solitary Confinement

Racism in Schools

Anti-Racism Campaigns

Anti-Black Racism

In Solidarity,


#BTLlaw21’s recommendations to the Independent Police Oversight Review

These are BTL’s recommendations to the Independent Police Oversight Review concerning police accountability and review of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Office of the Independent Police Review Director (OIPRD) and the Ontario Civilian Police Commission (OCPC) organizations that oversee police conduct.

To Whom it May Concern:

RE: Independent Police Oversight Review

This submission is regarding the review of the Special Investigations Unit (“SIU”), Office of the Independent Police Review Director (“OIPRD”) and the Ontario Civilian Police Commission (“OCPC”) organizations that oversee police conduct (collectively, “Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct”).


Between the Lines (“BTL”) is a public legal education initiative undertaken by three feminists who met while attending law school in Canada’s Capital. BTL is an effort to unravel legislation enacted by our governments and to make the legislation accessible to the communities impacted by the legislation. We believe in access to justice and ensuring that our communities have all the tools it needs to help fight against institutional, structural and cultural violence.

The comments that will follow are written in our capacities as Tamil, Black (of Grenadian and Trinidadian descent) and Indigenous (Anishnaabe-kwe from the Garden River First Nation) women-identifying activists. In light of our many lived experiences and realities, and although we do not believe that police oversight bodies have been created to protect Black, Indigenous and other racialized and criminalized victims of police violence, we engage in the following discussion with a special focus on  these realities.  The discussion also includes some recommendations relating to the carding regulations. We will conclude with an enumerated list of recommendations for the Independent Police Oversight Review to consider at the end of the public consultations.

Recommendations Regarding Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct

All three Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct are established pursuant to the Police Services Act, RSO 1990, c P 15 (“PSA”). The SIU is governed by Part VII of the PSA; the OIPRD is governed by Part II.1 of the PSA; and, the OCPC is governed by Part II of the PSA.

The relevant provisions governing the SIU indicate that current or former police officers cannot be appointed as a director and that current police officers cannot be appointed as investigators. However, subsequent provisions imply that police officers or members of other policing agencies may investigate “instances of serious injuries and deaths that may have resulted from criminal offences committed by police officers.” For instance, Section 113(6) of the PSA states, “An investigator shall not participate in an investigation that relates to members of a police force of which he or she was a member.” In other words, a current police officer can be appointed as an investigator so long as they are not investigating a matter which occurred in their own employing force. We recommend that the relevant provisions governing the SIU make it clear that current police officers cannot investigate any instances of serious injuries and deaths.

The SIU’s decision to investigate depends on whether the SIU director initiates an investigation, or at the request of the Solicitor General or Attorney General. There is no requirement that the director of the SIU investigate in all instances of serious injuries and deaths that may have resulted from criminal offences conducted by police officers. We recommend that the SIU, or any independent investigative body established, investigate in all instances of serious injuries and deaths that may have resulted from criminal offences conducted by police officers.

The relevant provisions governing the OIPRD indicate that there are several limitations on when complaints from members of the public may be made. We recommend extending this limitation to twelve (12) months as opposed to six (6) months.

The relevant provisions governing the OCPC do not indicate that a seat is reserved specifically for a member of the community, or communities impacted by the police force failing to comply with prescribed standards of police services. We recommend that a specific seat be reserved for a community member, and especially a representative from a community impacted by police violence.

Carding Recommendations Relating to Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct

The Ontario “carding regulations” indicate that “police officers who may be temporarily appointed to work as a police officer in Ontario [pursuant to the Interprovincial Policing Act, 2009, SO 2009, c 30 (“IPA”)] will not be governed by the Carding Regulations when collecting information about an individual.” The OIPRD provisions make no reference to the carding regulations and  do not address whether a police officer appointed to work in Ontario must comply with the OIPRD’s investigative powers.  Consequently, we recommend that the investigative powers of the OIPRD extend to police officers appointed to work in Ontario pursuant to the IPA.

Recommendations Concerning Transparency

Many of the decisions taken by the Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct are seldom released. These kind of practices offend the very principles of our justice system.

A foundational tenet of our justice system is that “justice must not only be done but must be seen to be done.” At its core are the principles of transparency, intelligibility, and justification, which underscore the importance for a decision-maker to give reasons. Providing clear reasons serves important purposes, namely accountability, justification, transparency and intelligibility:

Justification and intelligibility are present when a basis for a decision has been given, and the basis is understandable, with some discernable rationality and logic. Transparency speaks to the ability of observers to scrutinize and understand what an administrative decision-maker has decided and why (emphasis added).

Accountability speaks to the rule of law, and “whether a decision-maker met the minimum standards of legality.”

While these named purposes are primarily administrative law principles governing the importance to give reasons for a decision, we strongly recommend importing similar principles in the Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct. It is imperative that the decisions made by these bodies be given significant purpose, force, and meaning to ensure communities affected by increasing police violence and surveillance can see that justice is done. We also recommend that the Organizations Overseeing Public Conduct prioritize community and public safety over a police officer’s privacy rights. Privacy rights, especially those privacy rights of representatives of the state enforcing its laws, do not permit the state or a state representative to inflict violence against communities–violence is never justified and should never be justified.


  1. BTL recommends that the relevant provisions governing the SIU make it clear that current police officers cannot investigate any instances of serious injuries and deaths.
  2. BTL  recommends a truly independent investigative body be set up with seats reserved specifically for community members from various communities impacted by police violence as well as reserve a seat for a member of a community impacted by police violence on all three Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct.
  3. BTL recommends that the SIU, or any independent investigative body established, must investigate in all instances of serious injuries and deaths that may have resulted from criminal offences conducted by police officers.
  4. BTL recommends extending the limitation period for a public complaint to be filed to the OIPRD to twelve (12) months as opposed to six (6) months.
  5. BTL recommends the OIPRD investigative powers extend to police officers temporarily appointed to work in Ontario pursuant to the IPA.
  6. BTL strongly recommends importing principles governing reasons for decisions in an administrative law context to the Organizations Overseeing Police Conduct.
  7. BTL recommends that all investigative reports be publicly released and that police officers be named.
  8. BTL recommends appropriate consultations be made with the Anti-Racism Directorate for all of the above recommendations.


Samantha Peters

Mayoori Malankov

Naomi Sayers

#BTLlaw21 round-up featuring: #EndCarding, #DestroytheData and Policing

There has been a lot (more) discussion this past week about #carding in light of the Toronto Police Services Board’s approval of new carding rules last week.  We want to be clear that BTLlaw21 supports calls for the elimination of carding and to #destroythedata.

For those of you who are not familiar with the racist practice of carding, here is a link to our commentary and analysis of the carding regulations under the Police Services Act.  Also, here is our #carding Prezi for more information.  If you do share this, please feel free to @ us on our social media.

Below is a round-up of articles related to carding, racial profiling, public transit, anti-Black racism and a lot of other important and pressing issues:

Upcoming Deadlines / Important Dates:

  1. November 30: Deadline to submit comments about police accountability
  2. December 8: Event on “Gender, Carding & Racial Profiling”

Also, a HUGE congrats to Naomi for making the Everyday Political Citizen 2016 shortlist!!

In solidarity and in rage,


Weekly round-up with lots of great news from #LdnOnt City Councillors! #carding #onpoli

Sorry for the delay in the weekly round-up. A lot of things have happened within the last week, especially in London, Ontario. Excellent work being done in and around carding by citizens of London as well as the city council. Watch City Councillor Mohamed Salih give an emotion speech at one of the recent meetings, where City Council unanimously voted to call on the police board to END carding. Other news includes:


#BTLLaw21 Weekly Roundup

Hello all! Sorry for the delay in getting the weekly round up to you! If there is something you see that you would like to have included in this weekly round and it is relevant to BTL, please send it our way (just DM us on twitter, message us on Facebook or use our contact form).

Last week, Desmond Cole drop some truth bombs on everyone (as usual) with his article on the Trump as President.

Justice Tulloch announced a Police oversight public meeting last week (apologies for not getting this out sooner–but like we say, if there is something you see that you would like featured, send it our way!)

Trans* Legal Assessment still underway–please share widely; last day to submit is November 21!

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Joe-Bryan Ndikuriyo.

Other weekly roundup news articles or interesting posts include:

Weekly roundup: #MMIWG, #BlackinTO and #AdamCapey

This week feature includes the following:

#BTLlaw21 round-up: Police oversight bodies, #GenYAsksY, and #AdamCapay

During this week’s roundup, we have articles talking about Ontario’s ombudsman review into police oversight bodies, video from #GenYAsksY forum, and Black students in Peel region discuss classroom challenges.