Canadian Police College Process Review: Terms of Reference for the Independent Observer

Independent Observer to Investigations and Reviews Arising From Allegations of Harassment and Misconduct at the Canadian Police College Explosives Training Unit


Allegations of misconduct and harassment relating to incidents at the Canadian Police College (CPC) Explosives Training Unit (ETU) arising in 2012 and subsequently were recently raised to the RCMP Commissioner. In response to those allegations, the Commissioner has directed that:

  • The Commanding Officer, National Headquarters participate and assist, as requested, in thoroughly investigating all recent allegations of harassment and misconduct at the Canadian Police College (CPC) Explosives Training Unit (ETU) and actively canvass for any misconduct at the CPC ETU that may not yet have been disclosed;
  • The RCMP's National Division, which has expertise in sensitive investigations, undertake the Code of Conduct investigation(s) into recent allegations of harassment and misconduct at the CPC ETU and any additional arising from that investigation;
  • The Commanding Officer, National Division act as the Conduct Authority in respect of any discipline arising from the Code of Conduct investigation(s) into recent allegations of harassment and misconduct at the CPC ETU and any additional allegations arising from that investigation;
  • The Associate Chief Human Resources Officer lead a multi-disciplinary team that will be charged with conducting several recently initiated reviews including: the handling and investigation of the initial disclosure, including conduct-related decision-making and whether all allegations were properly canvassed (Process Review); the human resources processes throughout including communication up the chain of command and how the subject members came to work in the same workplace as some of the victims (Human Resource Review); and, a wellness review of the CPC ETU and Chemical Biological Radioactive Nuclear Environmental (CBRNE) combined workplace, including ensuring that victims of harassment and misconduct are offered appropriate support (Wellness Review).

A Steering Committee comprised of the Chief Human Resources Officer, the Deputy Commissioner, Specialized Policing Services, the Chief Strategic Policy and Planning Officer, and the Professional Responsibility Officer will receive weekly updates from the investigative and multi-disciplinary teams to ensure that the required actions proceed professionally, thoroughly and expeditiously. The Steering Committee will ensure the multi-disciplinary team is properly resourced to meet the review requirement and timeline.

In consideration of and in conjunction with all of the above, an Independent Observer has been appointed in accordance with the Terms of Reference set out below.

Terms of Reference

  1. The Independent Observer will assess whether the work of the multi-disciplinary team and the Steering Committee is thorough, impartial and professional. Impartiality will be understood as an absence of prejudice or bias, actual or perceived, in the outcome of the investigation(s) and reviews that will be guided solely by the evidence.
  2. Throughout the course of all activities, the Independent Observer is expected to make observations and recommendations on any issues relating to his or her mandate. These observations and recommendations may be made to the Steering Committee or, in the event the recommendation relates to the Steering Committee or at the preference of the Independent Observer, to the Commissioner. This includes identifying potential concerns and proposing solutions for resolution of such concerns.
  3. The Independent Observer will provide a final report of his or her observations and conclusions as soon as feasible following the conclusion of the investigation and review processes. The format of such report shall be determined by the Independent Observer.
  4. The Deputy Commissioner, Specialized Policing Services and his office will act as liaison to the Independent Observer to ensure that he or she has access to the information and documents he or she deems to be required. This will include reasonable access to employees for the purpose of interview/discussion.
  5. The Independent Observer will be invited to all meetings of the Steering Committee.
  6. The RCMP shall provide to the Independent Observer facility access and a secure workspace for use during business hours, as well as office supplies and resources as required.
  7. The Independent Observer shall maintain document security as provided by the Government of Canada Security Policy.
  8. The Independent Observer will respect the provisions of the Privacy Act as they relate to personal information.
  9. The Independent Observer will inform the RCMP of any media or government requests for engagement.
  10. The Independent Observer is expected to provide a conclusory presentation to government, media, and/or other identified stakeholders.
  11. The Independent Observer shall be reimbursed for any necessary travel and disbursements in accordance with Government of Canada policy.

In consideration of the foregoing and in accordance with the Terms of Reference set out above, I agree to act as the Independent Observer in this matter.

Assented to this ____________ day of _____________________________ at Ottawa, Ontario.

Paul E. Kennedy

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