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Her Excellency the Governor General recommends to the House of Commons the appropriation of public revenue under the circumstances, in the manner and for the purposes set out in a measure entitled “An Act to amend the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts”.
This enactment amends the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act to establish a new civilian review body to replace the existing Royal Canadian Mounted Police Public Complaints Commission, to improve the current complaints system and to establish certain requirements with respect to the investigation of serious incidents involving the conduct of individual members and others.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police Review and Complaints Commission, consisting only of members who are civilians, has additional powers to review and report on the activities of the Force and to investigate the conduct of individual members and others appointed under Part I. The Commission may conduct a review of specified activities of the Force and report to the Minister on the Force’s compliance with applicable Acts, regulations, ministerial directives, policies and procedures. The Commission may also review and report on the activities of the Force in any province or territory that has entered into an arrangement with the Minister for the provision of policing services. The Commission has, for the purpose of conducting those reviews and for conducting investigations and hearings into individual conduct, a new right of access to all information, other than cabinet confidences, that is under the control of the Force or in its possession.
The current complaints system, which provides for complaints from the public as well as those initiated by the Chair of the Commission, has been improved by increasing the powers of the Commission and the involvement of individual complainants in the process. In addition to the new right of access to information, the Commission has the same powers as a superior court of record to compel and enforce the production of oral and written evidence relating to a complaint. The involvement of complainants is increased by permitting representations regarding the impact of the misconduct to be made and by providing the complainant with a right to receive regular updates on the progress of any investigation.
A new Part is added to the Act to establish certain requirements relating to serious incidents involving the conduct of individual members and others. If a provincial authority designates a special investigative unit or independent police force to investigate such a serious incident, the Force is required to refer its investigation of the incident to that investigative body or police force. The Force will only investigate a serious incident if no such designation is made and the Force, after reasonable efforts, is unable to identify an investigative body or another police force to investigate. Observers may be appointed to review and report on the impartiality of an investigation of a serious incident by the Force or another police force.
Finally, the enactment makes consequential amendments to other Acts.
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