Supporting education and evidence-based innovations in public safety

Find out about our First Annual Conference on Canadian Police Reform

What is the Canadian College of Policing?

Citizens are asking for fundamental change in policing.

We propose a system of national governance that will deliver excellence in the training of police recruits. The proposal is modeled after the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and the College of Policing in the United Kingdom.


A Policing College for Canada will set common nation-wide standards in police recruit training and advance the professional practice of policing whilst increasing the trust of Canadians across the nation.



A Policing College for Canadians

National Governance for Excellence in Police Recruit Training

We propose a system of national governance that will deliver excellence in the training of police recruits. The proposal is modeled after the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and the College of Policing in the United Kingdom. A Policing College for Canada will set common nation-wide standards in police recruit training and advance the professional practice of policing whilst increasing the trust of Canadians across the nation.


What is a Policing College?

The world and our nation are evolving and so must police to meet the realities of the 21st Century. It is time to elevate policing as a profession because policing is an important element of our stability as a nation.  We are now a diverse nation and we must stand strong as a democracy in a world with growing disorder. 

      • The College will research and develop evidence-based course content to support training delivered at the local level by applying nation-wide principles and consistent curriculum standards prepared by a team of citizens, police and academics.  
      • Training centres across Canada could  be accredited for the quality of their pedagogy and the inclusive nature of the training environment.  Trainers should have advanced skills in adult education. 
      • Nationally accredited examinations should assess knowledge of history, theory and practical knowledge. The emphasis within the curriculum must reflect the local community and adequately prepare recruits to serve our diverse society.  

The purpose of the College is to provide those working in policing with the best skills and knowledge derived from what is proven to work to prevent crime, protect the public, and secure public trust. The outcome will be better trained recruits qualified for portable employment in any jurisdiction of Canada including First Nations Policing.  Certifying police officers to a standard level of knowledge will ensure a common level of ability, knowledge and empathy from the High Arctic to the 49th parallel.


The models that show the way for our Policing College

  • The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPS) was established by Act of Parliament in 1929 to deliver excellence in the training of post-graduate doctors. Although education and health care are the responsibility of the provinces, the RCPS has succeeded in ensuring Canadian physicians are competent across the world.  Physicians are trusted by Canadians.
  • The College of Policing in the United Kingdom was created in 2012 to guide police officers and policing authorities to a higher level of professionalism.

How can Canada create a successful national Policing College?

We propose an Act of Parliament to establish the College. Governance of the College would include policing officials and citizens representing the diversity of Canada. It is important to achieve understanding with the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police and each provincial Solicitor General as a first step. We believe that police leaders, First Nations leaders, other community leaders, police associations and police officers are ready for change.

National standards will:

  • Fill the voids of current training by enhancing the understanding of diversity, racism and mental health thus enabling officers to better understand and better calm people and de-escalate.
  • Enhance the understanding of First Nations history and colonization and issues affecting marginalized people in Canada.
  • Provide essential knowledge: social pedagogy, history of policing, purpose of policing, the nature of peace-keeping and the application of Peel's Principles.
  • Eliminate glaring inconsistencies in recruit training across the nation.
  • Ensure training incorporates the latest evidence based police research.
  • Reduce the burden for the oversight of training and the cost of curriculum development costs for police agencies and colleges in Canada.

The proposal does not duplicate or infringe on the mandates of the following:

  • Canadian Police College. Provides special skills training, executive development, forensics,hostage negotiation etc.
  • Canadian Police Knowledge Network. Provides practical on-line courses in specific policing subjects and skills.
  • National, provincial or municipal training centers operated by police services.

The proposal has been discussed with and support has been expressed by leaders of the following organizations:

  • a former Deputy Prime Minister of Canada
  • a former Justice Minister and Attorney General of Canada
  • 5 serving Senators
  • several academics who are professors and police researchers
  • The federal ombudsperson for victims of crime
  • The Black Coalition Against Racism (B-Car)
  • Canadian Police Association Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police
  • Canadian Association of Police Governance
  • Canadian Police Knowledge Network
  • a Deputy Minister of Advanced Education
  • several serving and former police chiefs and executive members.


    Links


    Further Reading; News Articles and Publications 

    Opinion: Police training across Canada should adopt reforms proposed in Edmonton

    John Lilley, Nancy McNaughton, David Cassels, Roger Chaffin (2021) Edmonton Journal 

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    Find out about our First Annual Conference on Canadian Police Reform

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