The Prince Albert Grand Council (PAGC) is speaking out after the public release of the recommendations of an independent report into the operations and governance of the Prince Albert Police Service (PAPS).
In the media release, which the Tribal Council sent out Wednesday morning, they called for the report’s 45 recommendations to be put in place immediately.
The PAGC said they would like to see recommendation number 28, which calls for the Government of Saskatchewan to have representation on the Board of Police Commissioners, to be expanded to call for representation from the PAGC. The Tribal Council said they believe their inclusion would add valuable perspectives and insights.
PAGC Grand Chief Brian Hardlotte said their heartfelt sympathies remain with the families who have been impacted by the three in custody deaths involving PAPS along with the death of baby Tanner Brass. The grand chief said the PAGC stands with the families in their pushes for truth and justice. He added the recommendations from the independent report lay out solutions to the problems which lead to the deaths.
“We firmly believe these recommendations provide a crucial road map for transformation and they all must be swiftly acted upon to prevent such tragedies from happening again,” he said.
The 45 proposed recommendations touch on a range of areas within the police service, including recommendation to improve the relationship between PAPS leadership and the local police association. It as well suggests changes to disciplinary processes and calls for senior leadership to provide better communication.
Speaking at a Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) media conference in Saskatoon Wednesday, the PAGC grand chief said the status quo cannot continue. He stressed the police need to be thoughtful when it comes to the people they are coming in to contact with while doing their work.
“I’ve always asked the police services, respect the vulnerable people, not only the vulnerable people, the people that you take into custody, that’s all we ask,” he said.
(Top Photo: PAGC Grand Chief Brian Hardlotte. Photo by Michael Joel-Hansen.)