A Public Inquiry into G-20 2010 Toronto Policing is Clearly Urgently Required

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A Public Inquiry into G-20 2010 Toronto Policing is Clearly Urgently Required

For a Public Inquiry into G-20 Toronto Policing

 

Clearly there is an urgent and alarming requirement for a public inquiry into all aspects of the police response and performance during the G-20 Toronto event: Experiences, observations, and how/who to pressure for such an inquiry...

Cueball Cueball's picture

An inquiry? Are you serious?

We should:

A) Sue the provincial government for passing unconstitutional in-cabinet adminstrative measures directly in contravention of the charter. Ones that allowed search without probable cause.

B) Sue the city of Toronto, in an action naming the police department for willfully abandoning thier duty to protect ther rights of Canadians to peacefully assemble, and allowing violent an indiscriminate vandalism to go on for several hours without any attempt by the Toronto police force to apprehend people in the commission of criminal acts in broad daylight in view of the police.

vaudree

Amnesty International Canada seems interested in looking more closely into police response.

 

 

ennir

A class action suit by the peaceful protesters who were unlawfully arrested?

Michelle

I also want a public inquiry.

I also think it might be a good idea to not let the police or the politicians think we're going to forget this fascist shit.  Peaceful protests outside police stations, Queen's Park, and City Hall until we get an inquiry might be an idea. 

Cueball Cueball's picture

Who cares about amnesty international. The police failure to intercede while people were engaged in property damage in plain view of the police on Saturday afternoon is grounds for a suit by those organizations that organized the protests.

This is ridiculous. I am watching film footage of 17 or 18 year old kids smashing windows surrounded by journalists without any attempt to arrest the perpetrators in the act. If 20 journalists can assemble to film this in progress, I simply do not understand how it is that 2 police officers could not be present to arrest these people. The bouncers at the Brunswick Tavern would have had this thing dealt with in about 20 minutes.

Groggo

Dead on.   It all stinks to high heaven.   The cops were very curiously unseen in certain areas.  How could they be bizarrely absent from Bay and King, the heart of the financial sector and Canadian capitalism, while a police car is set ablaze and lunatics allowed to run wild?.   How could they abandon two patrol cars in the middle of Queen St. so dumbkopfs (or police operatives) could trash them and set them on fire, all without intervention?    The cops were overwhelmingly present in some places, and oddly absent in others.   And tonight they continued this odd behaviour: they outnumbered and menaced several hundred people for five hours at Queen and Spadina, all without explanation, and arrested scores of people under some vague charge of 'public obstruction'.    We have been saying we were living in a police state for the past week, and the cops went and proved it. 

Cueball Cueball's picture

You are not going to get anything out of a public inquiry. You have to sue the City of Toronto and the police force for failing to provide adequate protection for the property and people of the city. From what I understand they simply failed to arrest anyone for about 4 hours after the commotion started. A lot of people will back that.

Above all you can not let the pursuit of this issue fall into the hands of some political hacks of the kind that routinely end up being in charge of so called "public inquiry's".

You need to pursue a legal action and try to get it heard in court.

remind remind's picture

i agree with cue

NDPP

An Awful Night for Democracy in Toronto, by Steve Paikan

http://www.tvo.org/cfmx/tvoorg/theagenda/index.cfm?page_id=3&blog_id=43&...

"I have reported from war zones in Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia, Lebanon and Israel. But last night's confrontation between peaceful demonstrators and riot police was the scariest situation I've ever been in, in almost 30 years of reporting.."

takeitslowly

Groogo , can i quote you from facebook

i love it.

NDPP

Cueball wrote:

Who cares about amnesty international. The police failure to intercede while people were engaged in property damage in plain view of the police on Saturday afternoon is grounds for a suit by those organizations that organized the protests.

NDPP

OK, well given that a large number of the organizations that organized/participated in that protest were labour organizations - they should be advised and get this thing rolling..

Fidel

[url=http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=19939]G20 Police State: Toronto is burning! Or is it?[/url] by Judy Rebick

Love the sign that guy is holding up. Right on!

takeitslowly

is that an undercover police officer breaking window

 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=19928

The Toronto G20 Riot Fraud: Undercover Police engaged in Purposeful Provocation

NDPP

Here is AI Canada's Alex Neve:

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2010/06/27/g20-toronto-protest.html

"Alex Neve told CBC news there were some 'very troubling human rights dimensions 'over how security was used in the past several days. The human rights group is concerned by the 'heavy, heavy police presence' in the city and by the talk about 'new weapons and unclear laws' that 'really led to quite a considerable chill,'..."

Compilation of Videos: G20 Police Violence

http://toronto.mediacoop.ca/video/compilation-videos-about-police-violen...

Michelle

I just saw this posted by a friend on Facebook. No link, sorry.  If anyone has a link, please post!

Quote:
Protest police abuse of power and show your solidarity with those who've been arrested - Monday the 28th at 5:30 at 40 College St. (Police Headquarters). Be there to defend our rights to freedom of assembly, freedom of speech, and freedom to dissent!

remind remind's picture

This demand for accountability, and inquiry/lawsuits crosses all lines of political persuassions be it right left, or non-of the above.

 

 

Those advocating against it, and are saying that the protestors got what was coming to them, have a clear agenda, and it is not on the side of either right or left politics in Canada. They are on the side of oppressing all peoples, no matter their political persuassions. Indeed one realizes they are the true fascists operating amongst us, perhaps to sew complete discord between right and left even, so that they can control it all before we realize it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

remind remind's picture

OMG CTV National reporting was pathetic, what a worm that blond guy is, guess he is shooting for a senate seat

Michelle

You're kidding.  I thought CTV was vastly superior tonight to the CBC reporting, which was nothing but police-worshiping puffery.

At least CTV was being critical, probably because their reporters were being arrested and detained too!  But then again, perhaps what CTV shows locally here in Toronto is different than what you're getting out west.

Freedom 55

I agree, Michelle. Not that CTV didn't have it's cringe-inducing moments too, but I was pleasantly surprised at how candid and critical their coverage was at times.

writer writer's picture

FB link to the event Michelle mentions above: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=122237507819100

writer writer's picture
NDPP

Our Voices Will Not Be Silenced: Witnesses to Canadian Fascism in Toronto

http://toronto.mediacoop.ca/story/our-voices-will-not-be-silenced/3896

"This is a war on our movements, a literal war on the streets of Toronto and make no mistake, the thugs are the ones who are armed and dangerous. If the people of this city and this country do not wake up and grasp the gravity of these two days, I would almost say they deserve the security crackdown that is so obviously being implemented in major population centers...

Welcome to Canada. Welcome to a new level of fascism in the Canadian state... If they are willing to use us as target practice for their rubber bullets and tear gas for peacefully protesting, what will be their response when we confront them with more direct action..? So, as activists, as movements, how are we going to respond?"

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

writer wrote:

Wow. Must-read column in ... the Toronto Sun:

http://www.torontosun.com/news/columnists/joe_warmington/2010/06/27/1453...

 

Notice how Joe confuzzles, repeating that the tactic worked?  Worked how?

 

Quote:

Thanks to the G20 Summit, the rules of protesting and how police deal with it, have been changed forever.

The tactic may be effective. But was it right?

 

Quote:

should be reviewed immediately by Office of the Independent Review Director to make sure everything done was not only legal and constitutional, but appropriate.

If it was, it was clearly a tactic that works. If it wasn't, there should be some resignations.

 

Never put it past "the scrawler" to work his pieces. He's just pissed cause he had to stand in the rain too.

Durrutix

Video of a cop on horseback riding over a protester.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-p64RHqi38&feature=related

Doesn't even stop to see if he cracked the kid's skull open.   Disgusting.

 

Durrutix

Video of a cop on horseback riding over a protester.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-p64RHqi38&feature=related

Doesn't even stop to see if he cracked the kid's skull open.   Disgusting.

 

Michelle

Cops smash this guy's camera for no reason except that he was filming what they were doing.  I got a kick out of him telling the cops, "See you on YouTube! I gotcha!"

You know, if I ever won millions of dollars, I think one thing I'd do with it is pay a couple of lawyers to do nothing but filing complaints and suing police who pull this shit.  So those assholes better hope I never start buying lottery tickets! :D

ennir

I think we need to go beyond an inquiry or suing, I think we should demand that Harper resign, there is no doubt that he was the engineer of this disgraceful and shameful event.  Peaceful protesters over and over again were attacked without provocation and the Liberals, NDP and the Bloc need to hold the Conservatives to account for this.

No Yards No Yards's picture

After paying $1 billion for security, there had to be seen "a justification" for spending that kind of money.

The leadership of 3 levels of government should be forced to resign over this ... Harper, Mcguinty, and Miller should all be held accountable, along with the cast of thousands that more than willingly "were only following orders".

Michelle

It was Dalton McGuinty and his government that passed the police state law that the cops used.  He should resign too.

NDPP

G20 Editorial: Brutal Spectacle Failed A City and Its People

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/article/829601--g20-editorial-...

Vote: Have Your Say: Do you think the police response to the G20 protests was heavy handed..?

NDPP

Canadian Civil Liberties Association Denounces Sweeping Arrests at G20: Incident Report Forms, Filing Formal Police Complaints

http://ccla.org

"We are receiving calls from across Toronto regarding incidents that happened during the G20. If you witnessed an event that you are concerned about, or feel your rights have been violated, we encourage you to contact us and fill out an incident report form (dowload here). We will keep the information confidential unless you specifically give us permission to report what happened. Once it is complete, email it to us at mail@ccla.org or fax it at (416) 861-1291

NDPP

G20 is Canada's Disgrace: But Not Because of the Rioters

http://unseatharper.ca/blog/index.php/2010/06/g20-is-canadas-disgrace-bu...

"Was this an attempt to ensure that we never speak out now?"

No Yards No Yards's picture

Mayor Miller is a fucking goof ... he's in a press conference right now, and he keeps coming back to the justification for the police actions being the "couple of hundred criminals" hiding among the legitimate protestors.

Now, think about that for a minute ... this is the same damn excuse that gets used in places like Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc for dropping bombs on wedding parties, wiping out whole villages. This is the way Israel handles Palestinians arrest or kill everyone because some "criminal" might be hiding among them.

Now it seems that Canadian citizens can be treated as poorly as our military treats innocent civilians in war zones.

Is it now going to be standard police procedure to arrest whole apartment buildings, even whole neighbourhoods, because some criminals might be hiding among the "legitimate citizens"?

This is indeed a sad day for Canadian democracy.

NDPP

Mayor David Miller: or Councillors

http://www.toronto.ca/city_council/index.htm

mayor_miller@toronto.ca

Phone: 416-397-2489

NDPP

Mass Arrests, the Security State and the Toronto G20 Summit

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=19938

"There clearly will need to be a full and independent investigation about the role of the police in the violence of the last few days, the role of agents provocateurs and plants in the planning of these events and the astonishing violence of the rights of ordinary people and protesters.."

Don't forget the emergency protest rally today at 5:30 at the 40 College St Police Station

No Yards No Yards's picture

Chief Blair is even worst than Miller. He claims that they were justified in arresting the protesters because they were "facilitating" the criminals. Imagine that, from now on any protest can be ended and all protesters arrested simply because someone considered in any way connected with the protest commits a crime ... all other protesters are now considered as "facilitating" criminal activity and are subject to arrest.

These fascists have to be stopped ... really!

 

ocsi

Largest mass arrests in Canadian history:

* 2010 Toronto G20: Roughly 900
* 1993 Clayoquot Sound logging blockades: 856
* 1970 October Crisis: 465
* 2001 Quebec City Summit of the Americas: 463
* 1981 Toronto bathhouse raids: 286

The above from the Globe and Mail.

 

humanity4all

I find it all difficult to understand people's horrific reaction to what occured in  Toronto this weekend. If one can only read the history of how europeans have colonised Canada and then look at its foreign policy through its armed forces and its corporations, what the the police did this weekend is somewhat "natural".

Or do canadians really believe that they should be treated differently to the way that they treated the people that where already there? Should canadians be treated differently to what their armed forces treat the Afghan people? Or should canadians be treated different to what their corporations treat the people of El Salvador or Gueatamala?

No Yards No Yards's picture

Thanks NDPP, email sent off to Miller.

I wonder when we will be hearing a condemnation of police actions from the NDP?

No Yards No Yards's picture

humanity4all wrote:

I find it all difficult to understand people's horrific reaction to what occured in  Toronto this weekend. If one can only read the history of how europeans have colonised Canada and then look at its foreign policy through its armed forces and its corporations, what the the police did this weekend is somewhat "natural".

Or do canadians really believe that they should be treated differently to the way that they treated the people that where already there? Should canadians be treated differently to what their armed forces treat the Afghan people? Or should canadians be treated different to what their corporations treat the people of El Salvador or Gueatamala?

 

No, we definitely should not be treated any better or worst, but the standard for all should be for better treatment, and if we in a supposed free and democratic country can not get it four ourselves, then it would seem a pretty futile exercise to try and get it for others in far less democratic countries.

humanity4all

I am sorry, but who are we to impose freedom and democracy on others. These are the attitudes that have created "nations" like canada. Please, we are in no position to tell anyone that they are less democratic!

No Yards No Yards's picture

I don't disagree with you on our moral right to impose freedom and democracy on others, but I fail to see what you would have us do?

You seem to be saying we don't deserve freedom and democracy so we should just shut up and stop complaining when our rights and freedoms are violated?

Is that your solution?

cruisin_turtle

Amen to the inquiry.

These events have shaken people's confidence in the police.  The most important to investigate is why did the police stand by watching a small group of vandals thrash our streets.  The second issue is why did they go on a random arrest spree the next day of peaceful marchers, media and passer-bys!

My hunch tells me if the individual police were left to their own, they would have policed the streets appropriately like they do every other day of the year.  But, they had orders to act in a certain way.  A very wrong way.  I hope city council will have the guts to call for an inquiry.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

No Yards wrote:
I wonder when we will be hearing a condemnation of police actions from the NDP?

 Here we go, yet again.Laughing

humanity4all

I agree with you No Yards, we need to something, however, I just feel that judging the way people structure their opinions, we continually have a disrespect of how countries like canada have been created. Therefore, it has been built into our consciousness, for example, that we are "more" democratic, where the history of the place does not give evidence to that.

Personallly, being able to freely consume endlees products, go on vacations and participate in sports does not show that we live in a democracy. After all nations like canada,australia,usa were major economic trophies for europeans!

 

Groggo

Mike McCormack, head of the police union, said today that of the 900-plus who were arrested, about 300 have been charged with criminal offences.   He offered no further explanation of who these people were, or what the offences were.  Mikey: step up and tell us all about it.

Let's face it: the 19,000 cops on the streets of Toronto were, to put it charitably, disorganized.  I kept asking myself: who the hell is in charge of this debacle?   This disorganization was obvious to anyone who watched what they were doing, or in some cases, NOT doing -- e.g. allowing goofballs to rampage UNOBSTRUCTED through downtown Toronto on Saturday.   In one most exceptional case, a police car was set ablaze at King and Bay Streets in the heart of the financial sector and adjacent to the wall of steel fencing 'protecting' the G20 delegates.  Where were the cops?  

In this kind of thing, optics are everything.   The cops seemed downright confused about where they were supposed to be to contain 'violence'.   In more than a few cases (see Queen-Spadina/Queen's Park) they were agitating and provoking otherwise peaceful protesters.  They were spoiling for a fight.   When you put 19,000 heavily armed cops from many different police forces across the country, a lack of cohesion is bound to occur.   The cops didn't appear to have either central leadership or sense of priority.  They frequently fomented chaos, which is darkly hilarious when you consider they were accusing protesters of 'chaos' and 'anarchy' all weekend. 

The whole mess reeks.   Bring on a public enquiry.   And why, once again, is the NDP missing in action on this one?

 

 

cruisin_turtle

Groggo wrote:

Let's face it: the 19,000 cops on the streets of Toronto were, to put it charitably, disorganized.  I kept asking myself: who the hell is in charge of this debacle?   This disorganization was obvious to anyone who watched what they were doing, or in some cases, NOT doing -- e.g. allowing goofballs to rampage UNOBSTRUCTED through downtown Toronto on Saturday.   In one most exceptional case, a police car was set ablaze at King and Bay Streets in the heart of the financial sector and adjacent to the wall of steel fencing 'protecting' the G20 delegates.  Where were the cops?  

The police were very organized and disciplined.  They acted exactly according to orders.  On Saturday they had orders to ONLY arrest people trying to break the fence.  They did just that.  They couldn't arrest vandals or people shouting verbal abuse at them because they had orders not to.  They were exremely disciplined in this regard.

Sean in Ottawa

Boom Boom wrote:

No Yards wrote:
I wonder when we will be hearing a condemnation of police actions from the NDP?

 Here we go, yet again.Laughing

Is there any reason we should not ask for this?

The following does not work for me:

Statement on the vandalism in downtown Toronto by NDP Leader Jack Layton

Sun 27 Jun 2010

New Democrats tonight add their voices to all those calling for an end to the violence and vandalism taking place in downtown Toronto.

Peaceful and lawful protests are important in a democracy and help raise important issues. Torontonians have often marched and protested peacefully on these streets, with virtually no serious incidents.

It is appalling to see the violence and vandalism we witnessed today. There are thousands of people in downtown Toronto frightened tonight about what is unfolding on our streets. And this deplorable incident is also driving people away from our city and hurting so many local businesses.

Criminal activity like this must be condemned, it is simply unacceptable.

New Democrats hope that order can quickly be restored, so we can return to peaceful and respectful dialogue about the critical issues - such as poverty, aid funding and climate change -- that the G20 leaders must address.

***

As a New Democrat supporter, I want to see the NDP ask some more serious questions about what happened and about the police actions.

We have spoken about the importance to see the difference between destructive attacks on the party and meaningful criticism. In light of the weekend's events, much of which is recorded on video, I think Layton's message is inappropriate.

I am not calling for resignations, defeat, destruction of the NDP but a little bit of accountability is not too much to ask for. NDPers here would do well to make their concerns known if they are unhappy with what they have seen on the weekend.

I would like to see a real investigation in to some of these events including an explanation as to why the police abandoned police cars and refused to intervene until the media had recorded everything.

Given the precedent of Montebello 2007, we have the right to ask who those thugs were and if they were in the employ of government for the purpose of justification of a billion dollars.

We may not know for sure now but it is a question worth asking.

I want the NDP to pose this question along with many others.

Groggo

cruisin_turtle wrote:

 

The police were very organized and disciplined.  They acted exactly according to orders.  On Saturday they had orders to ONLY arrest people trying to break the fence.  They did just that.  They couldn't arrest vandals or people shouting verbal abuse at them because they had orders not to.  They were exremely disciplined in this regard.

 

We must have been in different places on the weekend.   I was in many different parts of downtown Toronto.  Where were you?   And how do you KNOW the cops acted 'exactly' (your word) according to orders?   Are you privy to information denied the rest of us?

As I said, optics are everything.   You saw 'extremely disciplined'; I saw the opposite.  Where was this 'discipline' while cars were blazing and windows were being smashed in full view of hundreds of others (non-cops)?   Some 'organization'; some 'extremely disciplined'.

 

Sean in Ottawa

I guess the point is we don't know-- what if the police were in fact ordered to allow some violence and only protect certain objectives.

We don't know what their orders were and so don't know if they followed them. But that is hardly the point.

More important: who gave what orders for what purpose.

Who were the people that smashed the windows and burned the cars?

Once we know this we can determine if the problem is the orders or police not following instructions properly.

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