STATEMENT ON MONTREAL POLICE UNION PRESIDENT’S QUALIFICATION OF DIVERSITY AS A THREAT TO POLICE SAFETY
Montreal, December 22, 2014 --- CRARR strongly deplores the recent statement made by Montreal Police Union President Yves Francoeur, as published in some Quebec media, that police officers are at risk because of the “multi-ethnic character of Montreal.”
Equating racial and ethnic diversity, and the people who make up this diversity, with violence and security risks is unacceptable nonsense in this day and age. Such association is counterproductive to positive police race relations and the core values that makes ours a rich and dynamic city: respect, equity, social cohesion and a sense of shared citizenship.
Implying that members of racial, ethnocultural and other minorities somehow constitute a threat to police officers, betrays two self-evident truths: that a growing number of police officers in Montreal are themselves from these communities, and that Montrealers of diverse origins are taxpayers whose taxes fund police services.
Each day, in different neighborhoods, police officers and local residents of all colors and backgrounds work together and share things to live in harmony, unity and safety. This is what is required is leadership that strengthens these bonds, not public declarations that create scapegoats, sow mistrust and divide.
CRARR calls on Mr. Francoeur to apologize, and both Mayor Denis Coderre and Police Chief Marc Parent, to reaffirm diversity as a source of pride and strength of Montreal.