Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd in Minneapolis by kneeling on his neck until he couldn’t breathe—while knowingly being filmed. Regis Korchinski-Paquet died after police arrived to her Toronto home, responding to a call to support a mental health crisis. Brampton’s D’Andre Campbell was shot and killed by police on his front lawn while experiencing a mental health crisis. Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation woman, Chantel Moore was killed by police in New Brunswick while they were performing a wellness check. Many people who are hearing about these incidents are considering—for the first time—what Black people mean when we call for defunding the police. The call demands that we divest funding from police services and invest in other programs that are better equipped to deliver the safety and security needs of our society. The support for this call has been overwhelming. A cursory critical survey of the services that police provide show that police generally fail at executing their purported function. This moment calls for us to seriously consider what sort of policy changes are necessary to accomplish our goal of divesting from this anti-Black institution, and reinvesting in crucial social services.
The Institute’s Senior Policy Analyst Brittany Andrew-Amofah interviewed former Deputy Minister of Ontario & Manitoba Michael Mendelson on Canada's housing crisis in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and what housing solutions should be considered as Canada moves towards a recovery. Michael Mendelson is currently a Maytree Fellow.