Sask. introduces civilian-led model for police oversight
REGINA -- The Saskatchewan government introduced a new civilian-led independent police oversight model Monday.
The Serious Incident Response Team (SIRT) will investigate serious incidents involving police officers in the province, like sexual assault, serious injury or death in police custody.
Justice Minister and Attorney General Gordon Wyant said the province will start looking to appoint an executive director right away.
“We hope to have the executive director in place by July 1,” Wyant said. “We’re looking for someone that has some legal experience, someone who’s experienced in police work, perhaps someone that has experience in administrative law or somebody’s that legally trained.”
Wyant said they’re also looking for people with some form of legal experience for the SIRT investigators.
“We’re looking for people that have some significant amount of expertise when it comes to investigations, serious crimes, major crimes – retired police officers that have all that experience,” Wyant said.
The province also made an amendment to ensure the SIRT includes Indigenous representation by requiring a First Nations or Métis liaison if the victim is First Nations for Métis.
It will be up to the executive director to hire the other members of SIRT. Wyant said they will look at how other provinces have put together their police oversight models for inspiration. SIRT is expected to be operational in the fall.