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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Police release national position on conducted energy weapons


February 24, 2009
Media Release
Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police

OTTAWA, ON – Canada’s two national police associations, the Canadian Police Association (CPA) and the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP), have issued a joint position document supporting the use of conducted energy weapons (CEWs) by police within clear guidelines from governments and accountability from police agencies. The associations also stress the need for greater public awareness about the various use of force options available to police in Canada and the factors that police take into account when deciding which one to use.

Police from across the country met in late January to develop the position document at a workshop organized by the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police.

Chief Tom Kaye of the Owen Sound Police Service and a CACP Vice-President is positive about the outcome. “We drew upon the best expertise in the country and agreed on key points that we think could evolve into a framework for all police in Canada.”

Officers from the RCMP, Ontario Provincial Police, Sûreté du Québec and municipal police agencies across the country, as well as police training specialists, researchers and technical experts met at the Ontario Provincial Police Headquarters in Orillia. OPP Commissioner Julian Fantino, who hosted the event, delivered opening remarks.

“Conducted energy weapons help police save lives,” said Charles Momy, President of the Canadian Police Association. “These weapons enhance public safety, and officer safety. We maintain that all police officers should be authorized to use CEWs and provided with sufficient and recurring training on the use of these weapons and other use of force options. All officers need to understand and be competent in the application of force at all levels as set out in the use of force model.”

The conducted energy weapon, known by its trade name Taser, delivers a series of electrical pulses that temporarily incapacitate an individual. This allows law enforcement officers to apprehend violent or combative subjects, including those threatening to harm themselves, without using lethal force. Today’s position document has been developed by the CACP and CPA to clarify the position of Canadian police with respect to the need for and appropriate use of conducted energy weapons, as well as the risks associated with this and other authorized forms of force used by police in performing their lawful duties.

The position document on CEWs can be found on the websites of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police www.cacp.ca and the Canadian Police Association www.cpa-acp.ca.

The CPA is the national voice for approximately 57,000 police personnel serving across Canada. Through the CPA’s 160 member associations, CPA membership includes police personnel serving in police services from Canada's smallest towns and villages as well as those working in our largest municipal cities, provincial police services, members of the RCMP, railway police, and First Nations police associations.

The CACP is national in character. Its interests and concern have relevance to police at all levels including municipal, regional, provincial and federal. The Association is dedicated to the support and promotion of efficient law enforcement and to the protection and security of the people of Canada. Through its member police chiefs and other senior police executives the CACP represents in excess of 90% of the police community in Canada.


For more information, please contact:

Chief Thomas J. Kaye, O.O.M.,
Owen Sound Police Service
Vice-President, Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police
Tel:(519) 376-9812 ext 215
Text Box: Pierre Collin, CPA Communications Officer
Tel.: (613) 231-4168 / Cell: (613) 299-6516
Email: pcollin@cpa-acp.ca

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