July 7, 2015 CBC Metro Morning podcast discusses recent police shooting in Toronto

July 7, 2015 CBC Metro Morning podcast discusses recent police shooting in Toronto

You can access the above-noted CBC Metro Morning podcast here.

On the morning of July 7, 2015, I was listening to an interview (see link in previous sentence) on CBC Metro Morning regarding a recent police shooting in Toronto of a person holding a hammer.

There needs to be a cultural change, in the police, one of the people in the Metro Morning interview on July 7, 2015 was saying. The respondent added that if someone is psychologically disturbed, the police should not be the first to be called. A better option, he said, is to arrange for a crisis intervention team to be the first to arrive at the scene.

The Metro Morning interview featured two mental health professionals who have an understanding of the underlying issues involved in police shootings, in situations where police are called to address scenarios involving individuals with mental health issues.

It was noted that there has been a discussion, following similar police shootings in Toronto, about getting away from using lethal force, to focusing instead on de-escalation – on ways to turn the heat down in such situations.

There is, according to the Metro Morning interview, a police mobile crisis intervention team currently in place in Toronto, but the team is not available 24 hours a day. It was also noted that an ideal arrangement would be for police officers, with experience with mental health issues, to play the lead role in such interventions.

In the recent situation, discussed at the Metro Morning interview, there was no great amount of time devoted to de-escalation. This death, it was noted, need not have occurred. It was noted that inquests have been previously held, and that we need to go past the inquests and properly change how the police react. We need action in place of words. Why is that police officer in that situation, without backup, without knowledge? It’s not enough, it was noted, to just change the training; you need to change the police system; you need to change the police culture.

CBC Metro Morning podcast, July 7, 2015

The above-noted podcast includes the following information:

“Early on Sunday morning, Toronto Police responded to a noise complaint in a supportive housing building. Less than half an hour later, that man was dead. Matt Galloway spoke with Steve Lurie, he is the executive director of the Toronto Branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association. And with Kwame McKenzie, he is a Toronto psychiatrist, professor and CEO of the Wellesley Institute.”

[End of text]


A July 13, 2015 CBC article is entitled: “Black Lives Matter demands Toronto police apologize for Andrew Loku’s death.”


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