Police board approves culture change action plan

The Toronto Police board has unanimously approved an action plan on a "culture change" at the service.

They voted in favour of a report written over the past year by the transformational task force on modernizing policing.

The plan includes shifting focus towards community policing, having officers assigned to neighbourhoods on foot for a period of time that would allow them to get to know the people, the issues.

There are also plans for a three-year hiring freeze during restructuring, amalgamation of some police divisions that would include station closures, and improvement of technology to allow officers to be more mobile. 

Chief Mark Saunders told the board this is not "just another report," but a road map that he plans to follow.

"Moving in that direction, I think, is the right thing. Once it translates into action, we're going to have an amazing police service and an amazing city to live in," Saunders says.


Mayor John Tory says he is confident the public will start to notice change within the next year.

"People will say there are changes I can point to that I've begun to see that give me some confidence this report is going to be implemented."

As the plan is implemented, the chief will be reporting quarterly to the board on progress.