An apology has been issued by Canada’s police chiefs to 2SLGBTQ+ communities for failing to support them in the past.
In a video statement posted on Thursday, December 10, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) expressed regret for their former opposition to decriminalizing homosexuality.
Alongside the clip, CACP President Bryan Larkin wrote, “Police have an obligation and a duty to uphold the law and a responsibility to create and support safe communities for every Canadian.”
“However, at times, we have failed in our obligations,” he continued.
Larkin went on to say: “We take responsibility for our past wrongdoings and, on behalf of the CACP, I want to sincerely apologize for the harm we caused by not fully supporting 2SLGBTQ+ members in our community and organizations.”
He acknowledged that police continued to criminalize members of these communities after 1969, despite federal decriminalization that year.
During the video message, the CACP president admits that the organization cannot fully understand the damage it inflicted to those affected during that time.
However, he added as part of his written statement, “Now is the time for reconciliation and healing.”
Larkin concluded the message by urging Canadians to stand up together against “homophobia, transphobia, and any other kind of marginalization, shaming, disrespect or hate.”
The apology comes today in honour of International Human Rights Day.