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The CCLA will appear before the Ontario Superior Court of Justice as an intervenor in D’Arthenay v. Ontario Provincial Police. 

This case is about ensuring complaints about police conduct are adjudicated fairly. An individual was struck and killed by a speeding Ontario Provincial Police vehicle. The deceased’s spouse filed a complaint with the Office of the Independent Police Review Director, which found there were reasonable grounds the police officers involved engaged in misconduct. Under the Police Services Act, it was then up to the Commissioner of the OPP to decide if the misconduct was of a serious nature, which would trigger a requirement of a hearing and potential penalties. The Commissioner concluded the misconduct was not of a serious nature, but they did not explain how they reached this conclusion. No hearing was held into the police officers’ misconduct. 

The CCLA will make two submissions in this intervention. First, it is reasonable and necessary to demand a high degree of procedural fairness in decisions made by the OPP Commissioner relating to police complaints. Fairness demands that a determination of whether officer misconduct was serious include cogent reasons. Second, the Police Services Act demands a high degree of procedural fairness because of the public interest in police accountability. 

You can read the CCLA’s factum here. 

The CCLA is grateful to William McDowell and Alexa Jarvis of Lenzcner Slaght LLP for their excellent pro bono representation in this case. 

About the Canadian Civil Liberties Association

The CCLA is an independent, non-profit organization with supporters from across the country. Founded in 1964, the CCLA is a national human rights organization committed to defending the rights, dignity, safety, and freedoms of all people in Canada.

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