Nunavik police to hire Inuit crisis intervenors

Team to help negotiate in crisis situations, police chief says

Nunavik’s police chief says the organization is recruiting Inuit to work as intervenors to help officers respond to crisis situations. (File photo by Sarah Rogers)

By Sarah Rogers

Nunavik’s police chief says the organization is recruiting Inuit to help officers respond to crisis situations.

Over the past few months, the Nunavik Police Service has identified “crisis resolution facilitators” in nine of the region’s 14 communities, Chief Jean-Pierre Larose told the Kativik Regional Government council during meetings in Kuujjuaq on Wednesday.

“These individuals are respected within their community, speak Inuktitut and have good knowledge of the local population,” he said.

“Their role will be to assist the [police organization] by lowering the tension level and seek a passive solution in crisis situations.”

The newly-named Nunavik Police Service — formerly the Kativik Regional Police Force — has faced criticism in the past for not having an Inuktitut-speaking officer or staff member who can negotiate with people who are in crisis or suspects who are often armed and at risk of hurting themselves or others

Just four of the organization’s 82 officers are Inuit.

The new crisis intervenors will receive training by the provincial Sûreté du Québec police.

Larose didn’t indicate if intervenors will be hired on as staff members or on a contract basis. As part of the next phase of the initiative, however, the Nunavik Police Service intends to hire full-time Inuit employees to work at police stations across the region, he said.

Larose also fielded questions from councillors on Wednesday about how Nunavimmiut can file complaints about poor policing services or if they feel they were treated unfairly by an officer.

There are currently two agencies in Quebec mandated to investigate police organizations or their officers: the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes – which investigates when civilians are injured or killed during a police response — and the Commissaire à la déontologie policière, to which people can file complaints about individual officers.

Both organizations operate largely in French, which creates barriers for Inuktitut speakers.

As part of the process of recruiting crisis intervenors, Larose hopes to find someone who could serve as a liaison or ombudsperson for the police service.

“We can’t do our own investigation,” Larose said. “But our ombudsman could help citizens make their own complaints to those official organizations.”

“I want that person to help us with better communication.”

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(5) Comments:

  1. Posted by Way to go !! on

    A very good idea for everyone.
    This should be implemented for all cultures & races throughout Canada, whatever they
    may be.
    It would be good employment &a beneficial for everyone.

    • Posted by overboard on

      Why? The Inuit have been there forever, they’re not immigrants. Immigrants should adapt to the culture they’re moving into.

      • Posted by Outdated on

        Clearly you don’t know what the definition of an immigrant is. While about 20% of Canadians are immigrants, I’m sure that few of the police are.

        As for your assimilationist beliefs, you are about 60 years behind. Do try to keep up with changing times.

      • Posted by Immigrants All !! , One and All. on

        What immigrants are you on about ? Be more precise.
        Is it the ones who came over the Asian land bridge ?
        Is it the ones who came over the Atlantic Ocean ?
        Is it the ones who came by Jumbo jet ?
        I am mixture of all the races on earth, A pure Canadian !
        Good on ya, coloniailism !!

  2. Posted by yes, I agree on

    When Surete du Quebec was running Nunavik Inuit Constables, they use to request interveners when they would face crisis back then, even when being an Inuk Police, it was so helpful receiving a support from an elder or aged person.

    Good move Mr. Larose, your KRPF will finally show some moral support, even suspects needs counselling, that is how we need to show respectful Peace Officers.

    Good luck to Mr. Larose


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