Carding enhances public safety when done ‘right,’: Toronto police chief

Mark Saunders was announced as Toronto's new police chief on April 20, 2015. Gord Edick/Global News

TORONTO – Just days after Toronto’s mayor called for an end to the practice of randomly stopping and questioning residents in the streets, the city’s new police chief says it can enhance public safety when done properly.

READ MORE: Ontario Human Rights Commission calls for end to carding

Mark Saunders told the CBC radio show Metro Morning he does not support racial profiling or routinely stopping innocent people, but stopped short of denouncing the practice known as carding.

He told the show that “when it’s done right, it is lawful.”

Critics of the practice have said it tends to disproportionately affect young black men and has led to distrust of police.

Mayor John Tory joined their ranks this weekend, telling a news conference he intends to go before Toronto’s police board on June 18 and call for the elimination of carding.

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The practice was suspended in January by then-police chief Bill Blair, but Saunders has defended it as a valuable tool.

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