Racial Profiling and the Perils of Ancillary Police Powers
(2021) 99:2 Canadian Bar Review 429
34 Pages Posted: 6 Feb 2021 Last revised: 3 Sep 2021
Date Written: October 30, 2020
This article argues that the Supreme Court of Canada generally overlooks the reality of racial profiling when it creates or authorizes police powers. This oversight results in important problems. First, the Court does not adequately consider how racial profiling is a unique harm that breeds distrust of the police and of the justice system. Second, the Court does not impose sufficient oversight mechanisms that foster transparency and accountability. Third, when creating or authorizing police powers, the Court does not conduct a rigorous proportionality analysis that evaluates the harms of racial profiling. The article offers proposals to help address these problems.
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