More on Poitras

Interesting stuff this Poitras Commission. It cost taxpayers $20 million. Of the 175 proposals presented, the commision had these specific recommendations:

1. That a civil body should overseee the Surete du Quebec

2. The Surete du Quebec should have a mission statement (they didn’t have a mission statement? Well they do now)

3. Improve training for crime investigators (no progress there I should think)

4. The Surete should not conduct its own internal investigations, those should be done by the RCMP or MUC police.

5. That the Surete had poor management practices and needed to implement a performance evaluation system.

From these, then Minister of Public Security, Serge Menard set up six committees to look into improving criminal investigations, human resources practices and technology improvements, and he gave a 3 year timetable to implement changes.

In 2001 Menard proposed a 3 year strategic plan for change from 2001 – 2004 (you can view it here; it’s less of a plan and more of a fantasy – what, did he draw this out on a cocktail napkin?)

Menard vowed not to let the opportunity for change in the provincial police force escape, stating,

“This report is not going to sit on a shelf… Just because we’re not talking about it doesn’t mean we’re not acting.”

But there was a problem. The Party Quebecois was ousted in 2003. Jean Charest came to power and Menard was replaced by then Public Security minister Jacques Dupuis.

So what happened to all the reform?

If I worked for the Liberals and was answering my complaint the first thing I would do is document all the changes that have taken place in the 7 years since Poitras.


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