Calgary Police Service apologizes for past relationship with LGBTQ2S+ Calgarians
The Calgary Police Service is issuing a formal apology to Calgary’s gender and sexually diverse community for actions in the past that have contributed to the marginalization of LGBTQ2S+ Calgarians over the years.
The relationship between police agencies and gender and sexually diverse Canadians has been the focus of an ongoing national conversation. As part of that conversation, the Calgary Police Service has been meeting with members of Calgary’s gender and sexually diverse community over the last few years to discuss concerns and learn how the relationship between the Service and community can be further improved.
During these sessions, it became apparent that some members of the community have a mistrust and even fear of the police because of past experiences. The Service recognizes that the relationship between the police and the community cannot continue moving forward until past events are properly addressed.
“We have learned over time and there are things we did in the past that we would not do the same way today,” says Roger Chaffin, Chief Constable of the Calgary Police Service. “This apology is a way for us to acknowledge that our relationship with gender and sexually diverse Calgarians has changed and we now know that the things we did in the past were not the right things to do.”
“Acknowledging and expressing regret for this history is absolutely necessary,” says Brian Thiessen, Chair of the Calgary Police Commission. “It is an important part of moving the relationship forward and building mutual trust. Citizens expect police to be inclusive, fair, and respectful, and all police service members must display those community values.”
The apology was officially released to the gender and sexually diverse community through social media and by Chief Constable Chaffin reading it publicly the morning of Friday, July 27, 2018.