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Susan Stevenson warned by police court

Susan Stevenson warned by police court
Susan Stevenson warned by police court

The official findings of an independent tribunal into allegations of breaches of the code of conduct by London Police Services Board councillor Susan Stevenson were made public this week.

In the letter to the councillor, the Ontario Civilian Police Commission indicated that several inflammatory statements made on social media during the 2023-2024 period raised concerns.

Specific incidents referred to by the court included referring to people with addiction problems as ‘junkies’, posting photographs of individual homeless people in London without their consent and reinforcing negative stereotypes about people with addictions as violent and criminal.

According to the court’s correspondence, when confronted with these concerns,

Stevenson argued that her views on homelessness were political, independent of her position as a police board member. She had reposted an article with the offensive terminology rather than writing it herself. Furthermore, the court had no evidence that she had not sought permission to post images of homeless people.

The court noted that while the complaints were not criminal in nature, Stevenson’s behavior on social media was unbecoming of a police board member. “You are warned that the Code of Conduct requires a higher standard for members of a police board, and that social media posts may call into question your compliance with the Code of Conduct.”

Although the tribunal said it did not condone Stevenson’s actions, no formal investigation will take place at this time. It concluded its correspondence with a striking statement.

“You are encouraged to reflect on your behaviour and to try to do better in your role as a public leader in policing for the City of London. By continuing this behaviour you risk future investigations by and complaints to the Inspectorate of Constabulary.”

Stevenson had previously requested that her legal fees be covered by City Hall if she were to launch a judicial inquiry into the investigation. This request was denied.

CTV News has reached out to Councilman Stevenson for comment but has not yet received a response.