The B.C. Civil Liberties Association was recently described by the detachment head of the Williams Lake RCMP as “misleading and irresponsible.”
His comments came in response to a report issued by the BCCLA that contained the feedback of more than 300 people from 14 centres across the north and Interior of B.C. about their local police services.
His analysis is certainly baffling to our organization given that his boss, the head of the RCMP in B.C., has quite a different perspective.
In a public statement, RCMP deputy commissioner Peter Hourihan wrote: “I have read the report in its entirety and there are a number of aspects to the report that are beneficial for the RCMP, positive and negative. …While there are areas of the report that I would like further information before coming to a conclusion, there are opportunities in the report that we can look at to provide quality policing across British Columbia.”
We acknowledge that the people who came to our workshops came because they likely had concerns with RCMP conduct, but it is exactly this group the RCMP should be interested in winning over. To publish their views is neither misleading — we printed them word for word whenever possible — nor irresponsible.
May we respectfully suggest that a detachment that is unwilling to ask these simple questions or hear the answers offered may itself need to reconsider its responsibilities.
Executive Director, B.C. Civil Liberties Association