TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - March 3, 2014) - Justicia for Migrant Workers (J4MW) welcomes today's announcement by the Office of Independent Police Review Director (OIPRD) that it will conduct a systemic review into the DNA sweep of approximately 100 Caribbean migrant workers near Vienna, Ontario. Today's announcement is a result of a complaint that J4MW filed with the OIPRD on December 12, 2013.
In October and November 2013, the OPP conducted a DNA sweep where samples were taken from Indo-Caribbean and Afro-Caribbean men who did not conform to the suspect description. The men ranged in ages from 21 to 61, heights ranged from 5'0" to 6'5", and body sizes ranged between 130 lbs to 310lbs. Other identifying features (e.g. hairstyle) were also disregarded. The DNA sweep was part of an investigation into assault against a local woman.
"We welcome the OIPRD's decision to conduct a systemic review into the OPP's racial profiling of migrant farm workers. This review has the potential to further expose the egregious police misconduct that was perpetrated during the OPP's DNA sweep last October," says Shane Martinez, a lawyer representing Justicia for Migrant Workers (J4MW).
Justicia for Migrant workers is a not-for-profit collective based both in Vancouver, BC and Toronto, ON that advocates for the rights of migrant workers.