HRM’s police oversight board is recruiting two community members

Act fast if you want to join—applications close Tuesday at midnight.

If you think it’s absolutely unacceptable for a Halifax Regional Police officer–one of Halifax’s highest-paid civil servants–to shout something that sounds like “I will fill you full of fucking lead,” or "I will kill you for a fucking laugh" at a Black man whose arms are raised, now’s the time to claim a seat at the table that gets to say so, right to the chief, on the third Monday of every month at 12:30pm.

Halifax’s police oversight board, the Board of Police Commissioners, is the governing body for HRP and an advisory board for the RCMP, and applications for two citizen board members are being accepted until midnight tonight, Tuesday, March 30. The board’s seven members meet monthly with HRP’s chief, Dan Kinsella, and chief superintendent of the RCMP, Janis Gray, virtually over Zoom. 

The three-year term would see the two new members stepping onto the board in what may prove to be the most crucial period in its existence so far. Two big projects are in the works that could redefine how policing is done in Halifax. (The reports could also amount to very little–what changes and what doesn’t will depend on community consultation, union powers, elected officials, budgeting, public pressure and, importantly, who sits on the board of commissioners.) 

The application is relatively simple. It allows up to 500 words explaining what about your personal background makes you a good candidate for the board, opportunity to upload your resume, space to self-identify as a member of a minority group and some contact info. 

And if policing isn’t your thing, HRM is also recruiting for other advisory boards. The Design Review Committee, the Design Advisory Committee, the Halifax Port Authority Board of Directors and the Halifax Harbour Bridges Board of Commissioners are all looking for volunteer members. Halifax gets better if more diverse perspectives are at any table.

This article was update on March 30 with more details about the comment made by the officer.

About The Author

Caora McKenna

Caora is the City Editor at The Coast, where she writes about everything from city hall to police and housing issues. She’s been with The Coast since 2017, when she began as the publication’s Copy Editor.

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