First nation policing program and policy-making

Dalton Breutigam, Elisabeth Fortier

Abstract


The well-being of Indigenous peoples in Canada has been impacted by the historical interactions between the federal government and Indigenous communities. There is currently an over representation of Indigenous peoples in the justice system and a lack of police services meeting the cultural needs of First Nations communities. The Canadian government has instituted a program to assist in the appropriate delivery of police services to Indigenous communities through the First Nations Policing Program (FNPP). The purpose of this research is to explore how federal policing authorities make decisions about Indigenous policing, specifically the FNPP. Various methods of research were used, such as searching through publicly available federal policy documents and data. These resources were acquired by requesting information through the Access to Information and Privacy Act. The findings of this research demonstrate that the FNPP attempts to undertake consultations for the development of appropriate policies for First Nations communities. However, this consultation can be undermined by groupthink in small communities. Consultations might be improved using the Delphi principle, a method that assists in developing suitable policies for policing. The relevance of this discussion extends beyond the important issue of Indigenous over-representation in the justice system, also addressing the need for effective community policing for the unique circumstances of each community. Balancing community-focused expert advice using the Delphi method, and considering the risk of groupthink, consultation processes may allow individual communities to move towards effective policing using the FNPP.

Keywords


Indigenous; community policing; policy-making

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.35502/jcswb.104

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ISSN: 2371-4298 (Online)