On May 21st, The Toronto Police Services presented a report to Toronto City Hall's Community Development and Recreations Committee saying that their practices of racial profiling, carding, and handing over non-status migrants to immigration enforcement is in line with ensuring access without fear for undocumented Torontonians.
Migrants and their allies mobilized to pack the committee and insist that this report must be rejected and that the City of Toronto needs to step in and demand an end to racial profiling, and police collusion with immigration enforcement.
Racist policing, particularly the practice of carding means that Toronto Police regularly stops Black and Brown people in the city of Toronto. When Police do a warrant search or call immigration, and learn that the person does not have immigration status, they are handed over to immigration enforcement and often swiftly deported.
Similarly, when racialized people call the police, sometimes the Police will ID everyone involved, and upon finding out about someone's lack of immigration status, hand them over to immigration enforcement. Thus the vast number of deportations that take place - about 30 people every day or over 10,000 each year just in Toronto - take place as a result of Toronto Police's actions.
Organizers from a broad range of grassroots organizations across the city deputed to the committee, moving a slate of motions calling for an end to The Toronto Police Services practice of carding, an end to collaboration between The Toronto Police Services and Canada Border Services Agency, and for real accountability to the Access Without Fear policy passed by Toronto City Council in February 2013.
The motions we collectively tabled were not passed by the committee. Rather, motions passed that merely ask the police for more information will go to council next month. This issue returns to City Council in October 2015, and we will be there to make sure that justice is done.
Full list of deputing organizations:
No One Is Illegal, The Network for the Elimination of Police Violence, Jane Finch Action Against Poverty, Maggie's - Toronto Sex Workers' Action Project, The South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario, Health for All, Toronto Rape Crisis Centre/Multicultural Women Against Rape, Toronto Police Accountability Coalition, Educators for Peace and Justice, Butterfly, Parkdale Community Legal Services, Carranza Barristers and Solicitors, Disarm Toronto Police and Urban Alliance on Race Relations