The Aboriginal Peacekeeping Unit works proactively to improve access for community members to policing services.
In September 1992, the Toronto Police Services Board approved the establishment of the Aboriginal Peacekeeping Unit (APU). The Toronto Police Service became the first major urban police service in Canada to establish a unit to deal specifically with the issues faced by the Aboriginal community.
The unit makes presentations to Service members at the Toronto Police C.O. Bick College and to external organizations, to promote awareness and sensitivity when dealing with members of the Aboriginal community. The Aboriginal Peacekeeping Unit also participate extensively in the Service's recruiting strategy, making professional as well as personal presentations on the benefits of a career in policing to many First Nations communities in Toronto and across Ontario.
The Aboriginal Peacekeeping Unit combines aspects of traditional peacekeeping with community policing. Unit members attend various community meetings, seminars and workshops to provide consultation and education on police procedures, the role of the police, individual rights and other legal issues.
The Service also maintains an Aboriginal Community Consultative Committee. Members of the community work with a Staff Superintendent and a member of the Aboriginal Peacekeeping Unit to discuss issues of mutual concern in an atmosphere of trust and understanding.