Nova Scotia RCMP street check apology needed, says minister who cites own experience

HALIFAX — The new minister of African Nova Scotian Affairs is welcoming the RCMP promise of an apology for street checks that targeted Black people, but she’s more interested in what it will mean for future police conduct.

Twila Grosse says that’s because she has first-hand experience, having been pulled over by police during a traffic stop in Halifax for “no particular reason” about 20 years ago.

Grosse told reporters following a cabinet meeting today that there’s “no doubt in my mind” that she was pulled over because she was a Black driver.

Grosse says she’s looking forward to seeing how the Black community engages with a promised consultation process ahead of the apology planned for next year, adding that a police plan of action after that will be important.

The RCMP say they plan to issue the apology and a followup action plan after holding a series of 14 meetings with Black community members.

Street checks, which are now banned in Nova Scotia, occur when police stop people on the street to record their personal information.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 21, 2023.

The Canadian Press