When Montreal police released their long-awaited new policy on street checks this summer, many anti-racism activists were dismayed it did not address Black drivers being stopped for spurious reasons, an issue known commonly as "driving while Black."
In an exclusive interview with CBC Montreal, one of the senior officers in charge of the new policy explained why vehicle stops were excluded from the revamped guidelines.
SPVM chief inspector Vincent Richer said that in developing the policy, police had to balance the rights of individuals with the need for safety on the road.
"That's the equilibrium we have to think about when we put in place different policies," he said.
The guidelines for street checks were overhauled after evidence emerged of systemic bias in Montreal policing.