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NCJ Number: 72900 Find in a Library
Title: Complaint Procedures Against Police - The Movement for Change in England, Canada and Australia
Journal: Police Studies  Volume:3  Issue:2  Dated:(Summer 1980)  Pages:37-46
Author(s): R J Terrill
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 10
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: For Canada, England and Wales, and Australia, this paper examines the new interest in civilian boards to handle complaints against police and discusses recent complaint-processing changes.
Abstract: Changes in complaint processes in these countries have stemmed from a desire by the public to have some control over complaints and their disposition. The 43 police forces in England and Wales are accountable to both a local and a national authority, the Home Secretary. Although the Police Act of 1964 gave chief constables in each police force power to investigate and judge complaints, subsequent citizen unrest led to the enactment of the Police Complaint Board (PCB), with members appointed by the Home Secretary, to receive the complaints, prefer charges, and hold disciplinary hearings in conjunction with the chief constable. Canada's Federal Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) traditionally investigates and tries all complaints against itself. However, Parliament is presently considering an independent authority to receive and review complaints, monitor investigations, appoint tribunals to pass judgment and recommend remedial action. Finally, proposed changes in complaint processes in Australia stem from a recent proposal to create a national police force. As the complaint process is now vague, the government is attempting to introduce new procedures allowing more civilian control. Although the government has not yet passed the new legislation, several State and territorial governments have adopted parts of it. Sixty-seven notes are included.
Index Term(s): Australia; Canada; Citizen grievances; Civilian Review Boards; Complaint processing; Complaints against police; England; Laws and Statutes; Royal Canadian Mounted Police; Wales
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