Dear UBC Community
On June 16, 2020, following concerns of racial profiling, I called for an external review of Campus Security to ensure that racialized members of our community are treated equally to all other UBC members. In August of 2020, the Vice President, Finance & Operations, Peter Smailes, engaged Dana Campbell-Stevens, Workplace Investigator at the Toronto law firm, Rubin Thomlinson LLP, to conduct the review.
The review has now been completed and as I have indicated we are sharing the recommendations publicly. The report, which is available here, contains a series of important recommendations, many of which we have already begun to implement. Below are the key recommendations from the report:
The reviewers identified specific opportunities to improve the standard operating procedures for Campus Security on both campuses. The Vice President, Finance & Operations appreciates the suggestions provided by the reviewers and will be working with his team to incorporate these revisions into the procedures as well as ensuring that they are widely communicated, not only within Campus Security, but also to the community more broadly.
The reviewers identified six areas where there could be improvements in the training provided to Campus Security including building understanding on racial discrimination and racial harassment. The Vice President, Finance & Operations has already implemented an equity, diversity, and inclusion training program for all of his staff, including those within the Campus Security portfolios on both campuses and he will be working with the Equity & Inclusion Office to add further modules focused on anti-racism to the training program as necessary.
Investigating Complaints against Campus Security
The reviewers recommended that complaints about racial discrimination or racial harassment made against campus security should be investigated by a body external to Campus Security. The Vice President, Finance & Operations agrees with their recommendation and has instructed Campus Security direct all such complaints to the appropriate office in accordance with UBC’s Discrimination Policy.
Target Diversity in Campus Security
The reviewers noted the lack of diversity in UBC’s security officers, particularly at UBC Okanagan and encouraged the Campus Security leadership to build a campus security team that better reflects the racial diversity of the campus community as a whole. Campus Security has committed to work with the Equity & Inclusion Office to develop their diversity hiring practices.
Enhance Engagement of Security Personnel for UBC Okanagan
The reviewers recognized the challenges of using contract security guards at UBC Okanagan and recommended transitioning patrol officers to UBC employees or investing time and effort in ensuring that contract officers are sufficiently trained on the relevant policies. The Deputy Vice Chancellor at UBC Okanagan appreciates these recommendations and is working with her staff to engage the new provider of contract security services and develop key performance indicators to ensure the officers who provide this service are sufficiently trained.
In addition to the recommendations specific to Campus Security, the reviewers also provided institutional recommendations focused on policy enhancements, and training for the UBC community. These recommendations are aligned and consistent with the current institutional plans underway and support broader inclusive excellence work underway relating to equity, diversity and inclusion, anti-racism, and indigenous reconciliation.
Santa J. Ono
President and Vice-Chancellor