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Support for Police Record Checks Reform Act

Archived Backgrounder

Support for Police Record Checks Reform Act

Ministry of the Solicitor General

"We are delighted that the proposed legislation will address so many of our concerns. The Ontario Human Rights Commission has long advocated for a record check system that respects human rights, privacy and public safety. We are glad that individuals will be able to see their records and ask for reconsideration -- two very important steps forward."
-- Ruth Goba, Interim Chief Commissioner, Ontario Human Rights Commission

"The Police Record Checks Reform Act will lead to impactful change for individuals with mental health issues. For almost a decade, our organization has been working to ensure that mental health police records are not treated like criminal records. This legislation marks an important step towards that goal."
-- Camille Quenneville, CEO, Canadian Mental Health Association, Ontario

"Ontario's police leaders welcome the introduction of this legislation, which will bring consistency and clarity to Ontarians who require a record check while protecting public safety. The legislation is modeled after our September 2014 version of the Law Enforcement and Records Managers Network Guideline, which was developed with input from many community partners."
-- Chief Jennifer Evans, President, Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police

"For years, the John Howard Society of Ontario has been raising concerns about the negative impacts resulting from the disclosure of non-conviction information on police record checks. We've researched and documented the harm this practice has inflicted on so many individuals. As a result, we called for legislation. We applaud and wholeheartedly support the government's initiative on this issue. This proposed legislation signals a tremendous step forward for all Ontarians, who have or could face discrimination, stigmatization and exclusion arising from the release of non-conviction records."
-- Jacqueline Tasca, John Howard Society of Ontario

"The Canadian Civil Liberties Association applauds today's announcement about reforming the disclosure of non-conviction records. These new measures will make Ontario a Canadian leader in this important area. This more consistent, transparent, and accountable approach will go a long way to removing unnecessary but restrictive barriers -- and ending the discrimination caused by the release of non-conviction disposition records --  and in so doing, will increase employment and volunteering opportunities for thousands of Ontarians."
 -- Sukanya Pillay, Executive Director, Canadian Civil Liberties Association

"This legislation lifts the burden for nonprofits to review the unnecessary and often inappropriate information they get in police record checks -- and makes this consistent across the province. Nonprofits will continue to ensure public safety related to volunteers and employees, especially those who work with vulnerable populations. Record checks are just one tool for good risk management. The new law will help them get back to their missions and the communities they serve."
-- Cathy Taylor, Executive Director, Ontario Nonprofit Network

"These changes will mean a more streamlined process that allows employers to get accurate information more efficiently. This helps business by providing consistency for our members right across the province."
-- Allan O'Dette, President and CEO, Ontario Chamber of Commerce

"The Ontario Federation of Indigenous Friendship Centres applauds the Ontario government for introducing legislation that will standardize the process of conducting criminal record checks in the province. Barriers to employment and volunteerism are more often experienced in urban Aboriginal communities for various reasons. Limiting the release of non-conviction information is a welcome policy change that will help reduce the barriers to Aboriginal peoples' fuller participation in employment and volunteer sectors in their communities."
-- Sylvia Maracle, Executive Director, Ontario Federation of Indigenous Friendship Centres

"The OPP supports the government efforts in developing legislation regarding the criteria for release of police record information. This will provide clarity and consistency for police services, and will help to protect civil liberties of our citizens."
-- J.V.N. (Vince) Hawkes, Commissioner, Ontario Provincial Police

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