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BC Code of Ethics

Background

The British Columbia Police Code of Ethics officially came into being on January 14th, 2005 in a signing ceremony at the Justice Institute of British Columbia.

The Ethics Committee of the BC Association of Chiefs of Police worked on this initiative to articulate a commonly accepted set of ethical values for all police officers in the Province of British Columbia. This committee included:

  • Chief Constable Derek Egan (Saanich Police Dept.), committee chair
  • The late Deputy Chief Paul Tinsley (Ret., Abbotsford Police Dept.)
  • Deputy Chief Carolyn Daley (Ret., Vancouver Police Dept.)
  • Inspector Dan Ritchie (Canadian National Police)
  • Assist. Commissioner Gary Bass (“E” Division, Royal Canadian Mounted Police)
  • Mr. Steve Watt, former Director, Police Academy (JIBC).

The committee received input from representatives from the RCMP and all BC municipal police departments, along with the Vancouver Police Union, the BC Federation of Police Officers, the Vancouver Police Officers’ Association, the RCMP Division Staff Relations Representatives and the BC Police Board Association.

The committee also worked with SFU professor and business ethicist Dr. Mark Wexler, whose experience and expertise in the field contributed to the documents creation.

The initiative was based on the belief that a written code of ethics, shared by all police officers in the Province, would contribute to the goals of professionalism and sustaining the high degree of public confidence that the police in the province enjoy.

The BC Police Code of Ethics outlines fundamental principles, guiding values and primary responsibilities that guide and govern the conduct of police officers in their relationships with the public, the policing profession and its partners, and themselves personally. It is a commitment to the public to provide quality police service and, as such, formalizes long-standing practices and standards maintained by police organizations and officers across the province.