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In 2007, the Ontario legislature passed The Independent Police Review Act, 2007, to create the Office of the Independent Police Review Director. The act replaced Part V of the Police Services Act (PSA), establishing new guidelines for public complaints. The act amended the Police Services Act. The amendments came into force on October 19, 2009.

The act sets out the OIPRD's mandate as well as its authority and obligations to operate the public complaints system for Ontario, including: who may complain, about what, to whom, what processes are to be followed, and what options for resolution are available.
Key Components of the Independent Police Review Act, 2007
    • the Director is appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council on recommendation of the Attorney General and cannot be a police officer or former police officer
    • the act creates a mandatory police liaison officer position for police services
    • a complaint must be filed within six months of the incident
    • the act allows for witness or third-party complaints
    • the OIPRD reviews all complaints received to determine whether the complaint is about policy, service or conduct
    • the Director has the power to decide not to deal with a complaint, or to refer or retain a complaint for investigation
    • the chief of police and Commissioner of the OPP retain the responsibility for disciplinary hearings and discipline of police officers
    • the Director has the power to examine and review issues of a systemic nature that are the subject of, or that give rise to public complaints under the act
Regulations are rules that are governed by law and backed by the use of penalties. Regulations are made by the Lieutenant Governor in Council and have to be followed.

The following regulations, made under the authority of the Police Services Act, further develop and clarify the legal responsibilities and powers of the Office of the Independent Police Review Director: 
Rules are established standards or guides set up by an authority that must be followed in order to carry out the duties of a law or legislation. A rule explains how you should interact with an organization.
The OIPRD has also created a set of Rules of Procedure to help in the fair and effective day-to-day running of the public complaint system.

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