Hundreds of citizens have submitted written deputations to the Peel Regional Police (PRP) expressing their concerns and desire to defund the police. Many citizens believe that the police are involved in issues they are not qualified to handle and they want funding invested in the community.
At the Peel Police Services Board Meeting on June 26, Chief Nishan Duraiappah agreed, saying “all of our members would endorse an alternative for us to be doing things that we’re not the professionals at, including addictions, mental health, homelessness.”
Board members including Mayor Brown and Mayor Crombie disagreed with the idea of simply defunding the police. Recent board appointee, Alan Boughton, questioned why citizens would want to defund the police in the first place.
One written deputation reads, “Investments in community services, housing, education, and employment is what stops crime, not police.” In light of the death of Black men at the hands of Police, including D’Andre Campbell in April by Peel Police, citizens are speaking out and demanding change. “It is clear that any dollar spent funding the Peel Regional Police is a dollar spent putting a bullet in a Black person’s body” writes Hamnah Shahid.
Recently, a 62 year old man, Ejaz Choudry was killed by Peel Police during a “wellness check”, stirring outrage in the Canadian Pakistani community.
Although the PRP budget increased by 5.4% this year, Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie has said that the 2021 budget will be heavily scrutinized. In terms of 2020 property tax allocation, the largest portion of it will go towards the police.
The Peel Regional Police will be holding a tele-town hall on June 30 at 6:30 PM to address anti-Black racism and engage the community.