Stop carding now

The Alberta government needs to end carding now, before the spring election--before it's too late

We're nearly out of time before the 2019 election. It's time to stop carding now, before it's too late.

In 2017 freedom of information requests to police departments in several of Alberta’s major cities--including Edmonton, Calgary, and Lethbridge--made it very clear that Alberta has a carding problem.

Carding is the term for when police demand and record the personal information of people who are not even suspected of being involved in a crime. It’s something that is frequently happening during interactions that the police euphemistically call “street checks.”

The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that being carded is a violation of your civil rights as guaranteed by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

In Ontario an independent review recently advised that carding be completely banned.

And the Albertan data shows conclusively that carding isn’t just inherently unjust--it’s an injustice inflicted along racial lines. Black and Indigenous people in Alberta are carded far more than any other groups. In some areas the rates go past the outrageous and all the way to the absurd: if you’re an Indigenous woman in Edmonton for example you’re nearly ten times more likely to be subjected to carding than a white woman.

In just a few months we may be dealing with a conservative government that doesn’t care at all about putting a stop to this systematic, racist injustice. It's time to act.