News & Publications

Archived: OIPRD Director’s Message on Broken Trust 2023-2024

03/28/2024, by: Admin

Director’s Message 2023 – Following a two-year systemic review of the Thunder Bay Police Service (TBPS), the Office of the Independent Police Director (OIPRD) released a report in December 2018 with forty-four recommendations. At that time, the OIPRD committed to releasing annual public reports on the implementation of its recommendations in 2020 and 2021.

The first of two OIPRD annual public reports on implementation, One Year After Broken Trust, was released in February 2020 and reviewed implementation from January 2019 to January 2020. This report found that although important steps were taken, only four recommendations were considered fully implemented, while the majority were in progress as it was premature to assess the implementation of most recommendations. The final OIPRD annual public report on implementation was scheduled to be released in February 2021, however, implementation progress was limited in 2020-2021, and so the OIPRD made a decision to forego a final report in 2021 and instead continued to monitor the progress of the TBPS through its frequent public reports to the Thunder Bay Police Services Board (TBPSB). For ease of reference, links to each of these reports are provided here.

Similar to its findings in One Year After Broken Trust, OIPRD monitoring finds that although significant steps have been taken to implement each of the recommendations, the majority remain ongoing due to the continuation of the work.

The OIPRD has developed a Broken Trust recommendations progress tracker on its website. The progress tracker notes the recommendations that were implemented by the end of 2022. The remaining recommendations could not be assessed because they are evolving. Other recommendations relate to ongoing investigations or could be impacted by the Office of the Chief Coroner’s current systemic review of the Broken Trust Re-Investigation of Indigenous deaths in Thunder Bay.

StatusTotal – April 2023Total – June 2023
ONGOING29 (65.91%)29 (65.91%)
FULLY IMPLEMENTED15 (34.09%)15 (34.09%)

Director’s Message (January 2024) – Today, the Director of the Office of the Independent Police Review Director (OIPRD) is pleased to announce a significant update on the Broken Trust recommendations. Since our last meeting in August 2023 with the Chief of Police, senior officers of the Thunder Bay Police Service (TBPS), and the Thunder Bay Police Services Board (TBPSB), there has been proactive collaboration toward addressing the recommendations. A key development is the full implementation of the new Missing Persons Policy, subject to public consultation. This is particularly important because the events leading to Broken Trust centered around missing vulnerable individuals, a significant factor in the community’s lack of trust in the police service. The alignment of the new Missing Persons Policy with long-standing community concerns, its incorporation of current best practices in policing, and the forthcoming review by the community through a public consultation process could mark a significant turning point in restoring community trust, especially with the First Nations and Indigenous communities.

This journey has been lengthy and has required significant commitment and dedication. The extensive collaboration we are seeing today is a testament to the commitment of Chief Fleury, senior officers, and the TBPS board in finally implementing key Broken Trust recommendations. The progress made goes beyond procedural changes; it represents a fundamental shift towards a unified effort by both the TBPS and TBPSB to rebuild community trust in Thunder Bay. I commend the TBPS and TBPSB for their extensive efforts and new found dedication to addressing the Broken Trust recommendations and rebuilding community trust, which takes time and sustained effort.

StatusTotal – April 2023Total – June 2023Total – January 2024Total – April 2024
ONGOING29 (65.91%)29 (65.91%)18 (40.00%)17 (38.63%)
FULLY IMPLEMENTED15 (34.09%)15 (34.09%)26 (60.00%)27 (61.37%)