Clive Weighill says carding practice will continue, but will be reviewed
Saskatoon police chief Clive Weighill asked to address protesters who rallied outside of a public meeting Wednesday evening, and after a show of hands in the crowd, he was handed the loudspeaker.
Roughly 40 protesters gathered outside of TCU Place, where a public consultation on policing was happening, to protest the controversial practice of “carding.”
“Anybody that’s listened to me talk before knows I certainly believe in social justice,” Weighill said. “I’ve talked many times about the systemic issues our aboriginal population is facing: of poverty, of poor housing, of racism, of disadvantage. Those are the issues we’ve got to work on.”
Weighill acknowledged the controversy about carding. He said the issue came up at a meeting Wednesday of the Saskatchewan Association of Chiefs of Police and the Saskatchewan Police Commission.
“We’re looking at the policy on street checks and how they’re implemented,” the police chief said, adding that they will review how the carding issue is unfolding in Ontario. But he said carding should continue as a police practice.
Prior to Weighill speaking, filmmaker and activist Tasha Hubbard spoke to the crowd giving examples of people who say they were stopped by police without having done anything wrong.
“What is the message when indigenous people and other marginalized peoples are incessantly carded? The message is that indigenous people, people of colour, people who are poor, do not belong, that they are not welcome in certain spaces,” she said.
When asked about Clive Weighill speaking to the crowd, Hubbard said, “I think it’s good that the police chief is responding to it, I’m just not sure this was the right space.”
Saskatoon police have confirmed that nearly 4,500 people were stopped and asked for identification in the city last year, an average that is higher than other Canadian cities such as Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.