Current Problems

Justice (25-42)

Survey on racism experiences

August 9, 2021

Aug. 9, 2021: Southern Chiefs Organization – Released a new report on First Nation experiences of racism when dealing with police services across Manitoba: “SCO’s First Nation Experiences of Racism in Policing Survey

“A majority of our citizens face racism, and even violence and intimidation, when interacting with police officers that are meant to serve and protect them. While many police officers are not racist, it’s clear that the issue goes far beyond “a few bad apples”. We are talking about deep, systemic issues of racism within Manitoba’s police services.” SCO Grand Chief Jerry Daniels.

  • 88 per cent, agreed with the statement: “Racism is a problem in policing in Manitoba.”
  • 90 per cent of respondents reporting to have had at least one personal experience with police in Manitoba.
    nearly 53 per cent of respondents saying they feel less safe when they see police.
  • 70 per cent of respondents who indicated that they have personally interacted with police report experiencing racism firsthand and more than 81 per cent report that a family member of theirs has also experienced racism when dealing with police.
  • almost 59 per cent, reporting that they either often or always expect to face racism when dealing with Manitoba’s police services.
  • more than 66 per cent of respondents reported that they have actively avoided seeking help from police in Manitoba due to the effects of racism. Many shared that they have been treated as though they were the criminal when in reality, they were the victim of a crime and looking for help from the police with 65 per cent of respondent disagreeing or strongly disagreeing with the statement, “Overall, police in Manitoba are trustworthy”.
  • over 75 per cent, either disagreed or strongly disagreed with the statement that police in Manitoba use force appropriately
  • Eighty-two per cent of respondents either disagreed or strongly disagreed with the statement “Overall, police in Manitoba take responsibility for their actions.”

Survey participants offered key advice for police services and decision makers on how to improve and combat systemic racism in Manitoba’s policing. The top five suggestions were:

  1. Increase Indigenous representation in police forces;
  2. Implement mandatory training/education on mental health and Indigenous histories, traditions, and cultures;
  3. Defund the police and invest in social wellness and community-based initiatives;
  4. Increase screening requirements for police recruits;
  5. Establish community-based and community-led policing initiatives.