May 31, 2017

Open Letter to the Toronto Police Services Board
CC: Mayor John Tory, Chief of Police Mark Saunders

East Enders Against Racism (EEAR) is a community group of 1700+ people in east Toronto who
are committed to dismantling racism in our city and beyond.

In solidarity, we support Desmond Cole and Black Lives Matter – Toronto in their call to
suspend the School Resource Officer (SRO) program and remove police presence from
Toronto District School Board (TDSB) schools.

EEAR is alarmed by reports that the SRO program has negatively impacted Black, Indigenous
and other racialized students. As documented in the Towards Race Equity in Education report of
April 2017, one student reported that the police “make you feel like a criminal before you even
do anything. They instill fear in the school and change the culture.” Other reports describe
undocumented students living in fear of status checks and the criminalization of situations
which were once effectively handled by school staff. While the SRO program may have
intended to build bridges between the police and youth, it has resulted in discrimination and
marginalization for racialized students.

The SRO program has no place in our schools.

Sincerely,

East Enders Against Racism
[Online] https://www.facebook.com/EastEndersAR/
Twitter: @EEAgainstRacism