Policing Standards Unit
The members of the Policing Standards Unit, an
Inspector, four Detective Sergeants and an administrative assistant, serve to
protect both the integrity of the Niagara Regional Police Service and the
reputation of the Office of Chief of Police. This mandate is met by conducting
thorough and objective investigations into complaints that relate to
organizational policies, services provided and/or allegations of member
Policing Standards and Complaints
The Policing Standards Unit of the Niagara Regional Police Service is responsible for investigating public complaints and internal complaints against members of this Service.
Public complaints are complaints made by members of the public, which generally involve a specific officer’s conduct, the lack of service they received, or the policies of our Service.
Office of the Independent Police Review
to make a complaint against the police
with your complaint by local resolution
to request a review
Who can make a complaint?
You can make a complaint about a police officer if you:
- Have a concern or were offended by something a police
officer(s) said or did to you
- Were a witness to an incident involving a police
officer(s) that concerned or offended you
- Are concerned or distressed as a result of the way a relative or friend has been treated by a police
- Are acting on behalf of an individual listed above, for example, a person who has been given written permission to make a complaint on another’s behalf
- Have a complaint that a police department has not provided proper service
- Have a complaint about a policy of a police department
What can a person complain about?
The police have a code of conduct to follow that includes:
- To act with honesty and integrity
- To treat people with respect
- Not to abuse the extraordinary powers and authority police officers are granted
- To act in a manner that does not discredit or undermine public confidence in the police service
The Niagara Regional Police Service has General Orders that guide how they operate. Complaints about policies and services of a police organization are screened by the OIPRD but are not investigated by the OIPRD. These complaints are sent to the appropriate police service for investigation and a final report, with oversight by the
How to make a complaint:
There are many ways to file a complaint. The person may file their complaint in English or French:
- With the OIPRD by fax, on our website, in person, or by mailing in the form at the back of the booklet
- At any municipal, regional or provincial police station in Ontario
If they require assistance in filling out this form:
- Many local community organizations can give them assistance with filing their complaint and often provide translation services
- They do not require a lawyer to file a complaint, but a lawyer or legal clinic may assist with the complaint
For more information about the OIPRD, visit the website at
Internal complaints (or Chief’s complaints, as they are referred to) must be forwarded, in writing, through the appropriate chain of command. They are then assigned to the Policing Standards Unit for investigation.
Following the receipt of a public complaint or Chief’s complaint, statements and duty book notes are usually requested from the involved officers. Failure to respond to a statement request may result in disciplinary action being taken against that officer.
If there are any questions regarding the complaints procedure, do not hesitate to contact the Policing Standards Unit.
Additional Information Available to the Public on Public Complaints
In addition to a responsibility to investigate public or internal complaints
about member conduct, Investigators with the Policing Standards Unit are also
entrusted to complete special investigations that may be directed by the Chief
of Police. In collaboration with members of the District Detective Offices,
members of the Unit are also responsible for the investigation of criminal
offences alleged to have been committed by members in circumstances where the
mandate of the Province of Ontario Special Investigations Unit (SIU) has not
The SIU is a civilian government agency that
investigates incidents involving police officers and members of the public that
have resulted in serious injury or death. Their investigation determines whether
police committed a criminal offence during the incident that resulted in serious
injury or death. In these circumstances, the Inspector in charge of the Policing
Standards Unit fulfills the role of liaison between the Service and SIU.
Consistent with the provisions of the Police Services Act, members of the
Policing Standards Unit conduct independent investigations (commonly known as
“Section 11” investigations) into matters that have drawn the jurisdiction
of the SIU. “Section 11” investigations are conducted for the purpose of
reviewing the policies of or services provided by the police force and the
conduct of its officers. Results of the “Section 11” investigation are to be
shared with the Police Services Board after the results of the SIU investigation
are reported to the Attorney General.
Tel: 416-622-0748 or 1-800-787-8529