Toronto police will soon be carrying a new weapon, which fires a non-lethal projectile known as a “sock round”.
The new technology is the first in a long list of changes in response to the police’s handling of crisis situations.
In spring, a coroner’s inquest into fatal police shootings of three mentally ill people — Reyal Jardine-Douglas, Sylvia Klibingaitis, and Michael Eligon — recommended police consider using less-than-lethal use-of-force options.
Toronto Police Services are to report to the Police Services Board on Sept, 17 that they’re implementing 133 of the 140 recommendations contained in the JKE inquest.
“We have implemented as many of the recommendations as we can,” Deputy Chief Mike Federico says in a release on the police website.
Police are seeking excellence for safe encounters, which means “zero injury, zero death,” he says.
Also, three weeks have been added to the new recruit training system and a third day added for current officers in their annual in-service training to reinforce “de-escalation and de-stigmatization.” According to Deputy Chief Mike Federico, the training will focus on giving officers a better understanding of the nature of human beings and what they might experience during an emotional disorder.