Police chief says he's making progress in implementing reforms
Published Friday, June 16, 2017 8:04PM EDT
Montreal's Chief of Police said he is making progress as he overhauls the police force following allegations of corruption and wrongdoing by officers.
In march, Philippe Pichet released a 38 point action plan for his force after revelations of divisional rivalries, police spying on journalists, and possible fabrication of evidence and abuses by some officers.
Three months later Pichet said work on 11 of those tasks is complete.
"We're making sure that [everybody] is working together instead of working apart," said Pichet.
Officers are reviewing the force's code of discipline and looking at what kind of outside work Montreal's police officers are allowed to perform "to make sure, for the first side, that they're not taking that time on their duty work, and on the other side there's no conflict of interest regarding what they're doing," said Pichet.
One key issue remains outstanding: hiring an external ethics advisor.
Montreal police also need to hire a new head of Communications.
The chair of the public security committee, Anie Samson, said it's clear Montreal's police force is open to change.
"Words are words, but when it's written on paper and you go public, you have to make some changes" said Samson,
Projet Montreal's Alex Norris thinks the new openness to public scrutiny is healthy.
"We'd like to make this not the exception, but the rule to have a rule, that we have regular monthly meeting on police matters where the public can come and ask questions," said Norris.
Full implementation of the action plan will likely take until 2021, and Pichet said by then many upper managers in the force will be retired.
Pichet said he will wait for the recommendations of the Chamberland Commission -- which is still hearing testimony about spying on journalists by the Montreal police force, the Sureté du Quebec, and others.