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Street Checks Action – Contact the Halifax Regional Police
August 1, 2017
It has been 6 months since CBC released statistics about police/street checks* in Halifax. Since that time, many members of the Black community in Halifax have been unequivocal in their demand for an immediate moratorium on street checks. Instead, the police released an interim report in mid June committing to empty actions, such as continued analysis of street check data, and refusing to admit that street checks are a problem.
In the meantime, African Nova Scotians continue to be three times more likely to be stopped by police for random police checks than other groups.
Solidarity Halifax considers it an outrage that the police force has chosen not to listen to the countless voices from the Black community who continue to call for a moratorium. As an organization, we urge all people to take responsibility and not allow this issue to fall solely on the shoulders of the Black community. White people benefit every day from structural inequality, and to fail to speak out against street checks is to continue to prop up a racist system.
Solidarity Halifax calls on allies of the Black community to contact the Halifax Regional Police on Tuesday August 1st, (902-490-5154 or https://www.halifax.ca/fire-police/police/contact-us).
Help make this summer the end of street checks by starting the calls and emails while watching for further actions on this issue.
Please see suggested template for an email below:
Dear Chief Jean-Michel Blais,
I am writing this email/ making this phone call to express my disappointment and outrage with the response of the Halifax Regional Police regarding the issue of street checks.
I demand that the Halifax Regional Police (HRP) stop the practice of systemically racist street checks that disproportionally targets members of the Black community. This evidence is reflected in the HRP street check data. As of June, the HRP has only committed to continued analysis of this data, and refuses to admit that systemically racist street checks are a problem. The Black community has called for a moratorium on these street checks yet the HRP has to date ignored this request.
It is imperative that the HRP acknowledge and address systemic racism in Nova Scotia, and specifically within the police force and the criminal legal system. One step towards this is by ending systemically racist street check practices by officers in the HRP.
I look forward to learning of a just response from the HRP that addresses these concerns regarding street checks.