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Racial Profiling by Police in Canada Essay

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Systemic discrimination has been a part of Canada’s past. Women, racial and ethnic minorities as well as First Nations people have all faced discrimination in Canada. Policies such as, Charter of Rights and Freedoms, provincial and federal Human Rights Codes, as well has various employment equity programs have been placed in Canada’s constitution to fight and address discrimination issues. Despite these key documents placed for universal rights and freedoms Aboriginal and other minority populations in Canada continue to be discriminated against. Many believe there is no discrimination in Canada, and suggest any lack of success of these groups is a result of personal decisions and not systemic discrimination. While others feel that the legislation and equality policies have yet resulted in an equal society for all minorities. Racism is immersed in Canadian society; this is clearly shown by stories of racial profiling in law enforcement.
The key to understanding racialized profiling is to understand what systemic discrimination and profiling mean. Systemic discrimination sometimes called systemic racism is defined as, “Patterns and practices… which, although they may not be intended to disadvantage any group, can have the effect of disadvantaging or permitting discrimination against… racial minorities” (Comack, 2012, p30). Profiling in policing is defined as,
“The inverse of law enforcement. In law enforcement, a crime is discovered and the
police then look for a suspect who might possibly have committed it. Profiling means that a suspect is discovered and the police then look for a crime for the person to have possibly committed” (Tator & Henry, 2003, p3).
The act of racial profiling is found in many different insti...


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Comack, E. (2012). Racialized policing: Aboriginal people's encounters with the police. Black Point, Nova Scotia: Fernwood Publishing.
Holbert, S., & Rose, L. (2006). It is difficult to establish whether racial profiling is occurring, In D. E. Nelson, Racial Profiling. Farmington Hills: Greenhaven Press.
Hulbert, M. A. (2011). Pursuing justice: An introduction to justice studies. Black Point, Nova Scotia: Fernwood Publishing.
Satzewich, V., & Shaffir, W. (2009). Racism versus professionalism: Claims and counter-claims about racial profiling. Project Muse, 51(2), p199-226. doi: 10.3138/cjccj.51.2.199
Tanovich, D. M. (2006). The colour of justice: Policing race in Canada. Toronto, Ontario: Irwin Law.
Tator, H., & Henry, F. (2006). Racial profiling in Canada: Challenging the myth of 'a few bad apples'. Toronto, Ontario: University of Toronto Press Incorporated.







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