Deadly force…

June 7, 2020

CBC News – Shane McGee
Indigenous woman killed by Edmundston, N.B., police during wellness check

A 26 year Indigenous woman, Chantel Moore was shot and killed by an Edmundston police officer shortly after moving from BC to be near his family.  The police officer had come for a wellness check, requested by a former boyfriend in Toronto, when he alleges that he was attacked by a knife bearing woman and shot her in self-defence.  Local police are saying nothing about but incident but have invited Quebec’s independent police watchdog to investigate.  Related article: Toronto Star – Canadian Press Police in Edmundston, N.B., fatally shoot Indigenous woman during a wellness check    Related article:  Canadian – Pam Palmater Yes, Canada Has a Racism Crisis and It’s Killing Black and Indigenous Peoples    Related article: CBC News – Deadly force – Fatal encounters with police in Canada: 2000-2017    Related article: Toronto Star – Wendy Gillis (March 17, 2020)  SIU allegations ‘regularly ignored by police,’ critics say  Related article: Gotham Philosophical Society (US)  –  John Kleinig    Are Police the Tip of the Iceberg?    Related article: The Guardian (UK) – Sam T. Levin   What does ‘defund the police’ mean? The rallying cry sweeping the US – explained

CBC News – Verity Stevenson
Violent arrest of young black man by Laval police surfaces as calls renewed for police reform

The death of George Lloyd in the US is prompting many of the same questions about policing practices and prejudices in Canada.  This incident recording in Laval, QC, and police are defending the arrest while the victim has begun a lawsuit for false arrest.  The US incident has brought to the public a number of incident in the use of questionable amounts of force to effect an arrest, in Kelowna, BC, and in Edmonton, including the use of the knee on the neck.

Yale Climate Connections (US) – Dana Nuccitelli
Most Trump environmental rollbacks will take years to be reversed

“The Trump administration, after less than one full first term, has every likelihood of being adjudged the most anti-climate, anti-science, and anti-environment executive branch in U.S. history. With numerous high-level Trump nominees having cut their teeth as lobbyists with major polluting industries, the administration has been steadfast in weakening or eliminating major conservation and environmental regulations and programs.” So far, Trump has reverse over 100 environmental regulations that have set clean water and air standards considerable behind for any catch-up that a new administration may bring.   (Cf additional commentary at the web site:

The Intercept (US) – Ryan Devereau
Brooklyn Man Was Arrested for Curfew Violation. The FBI Interrogated Him about his Political Beliefs.

A new element has entered the US crisis over policing and racism.  This report says that both NY city police and FBI agents have questioned those arrested for breaking curfew about their links to terrorists and why they were protesting.  Usually, this sort of interrogation is considered part of the first amendment rights of those arrested and political questions are no-go for local or federal police.  The report has led to an effort by the National Lawyer’s Guild to collect names of those who may have suffered the same fate.  NY Police referred press to the FBI and the FBI has remained silent.

City News – Canadian Press
Crown to appeal controversial ‘extreme intoxication’ defence ruling

The ruling seems to excuse a serious crime of violence on the grounds that the defendant was too drunk or drugged to know what he / she was doing.  The Ontario Court of Appeal overturned the conviction of two men high on drugs when they killed or seriously injured two women.  Ontario is seeking leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada and the controversy now is whether the interpretation opens the flood gates to crimes connected with significant levels of intoxication from alcohol or drugs.

Toronto Star – Jason Miller
Why the Black struggle in Canada has all but been erased. Two historians explain our blind spot

Two social critics are suggesting that Canadians see Black discrimination instinctively as an American experience and that perception drowns out any acknowledgement of the proportions of the problem in Canada.  Further, they suggest that this perspective is welcomed by Canadian institutions practicing the prejudice as a defense against acknowledgement or change. Rinaldo Walcott, a black studies professor at the University of Toronto, and Afua Cooper, a professor at Dalhousie University, remind us that both Quebec and Ontario historically have had slavery, largely now eradicated from the history books and that much evidence of the slavery can still be found around North Preston, Halifax.  (The link includes a considerable list of resources for the view at the end of the page.)

Criminalization and Punishment in Canada
Tracking the Politics… Update – hunger strike ends at OCDC, the struggle continues

Shortly after it began, the hunger strike at Ottawa Carleton Detention Centre (OCDC) resulted in some wins for the prisoners, especially those with special diets.  The changes around food have been partially delivered but some are agreed but without deadlines for implementation.  Food is often a critical cause of tensions in prisons.  Other changes involve canteen and reading material.   Related article: CTV News – Josh Pringle   Hunger strike by 14 inmates at Ottawa jail over food, sanitary supplies is over: Ministry   Related article:  Everything Grand Prairie – Canadian Press ‘It’s brewing’: Inmates, guards worry about violence after COVID-19 lockdown

Atkinson Foundation
No she-covery without child care

The Atkinson Foundation has been part of the Toronto Star for some time, though its status with the sale of the paper is now unclear.  The theme calls for recognizing the benefits from the response to the Covif-19 virus to date and advocates for she-covery, especially child care.  The text here is the opening statement to the Foundation’s presentation to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities on the Government’s Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.