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Sociology of Crime and Law

Professor Owusu-Bempah comments on police use-of-force during wellness checks – National Post article

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah’s comments appeared in an article in the National Post titled “Police shootings in 2020: The effect on officers and those they are sworn to protect.” The article reviews the statistics of police shootings in Canada in 2020, comparing patterns among the 55 cases of this year and across some year-to-year trends. Professor … Read More

Professor Owusu-Bempah highlights lack of diversity in Canadian cannabis industry, calls to incorporate equity programs – Forbes Article

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah recently featured in a Forbes article by Amanda Siebert titled “How Canada’s (very white) cannabis industry could learn from social equity programs in the US.” In the article, Professor Owusu-Bempah discussed how the disproportionate harm Black and Indigenous communities faced under prohibition contrasts sharply with his research revealing white men to be … Read More

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah on persistent issues of systemic racism within RCMP in CBC News article

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah was recently featured in a CBC News article titled RCMP’s diversity hiring remains stagnant, new figures show by Catharine Tunney. The article opens with an overview of the lack of diversity in RCMP hiring practices over the last decade. In reference to the statistics provided by the RCMP, Professor Owusu-Bempah criticized their use … Read More

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah opposes RCMP union’s ‘thin blue line’ symbol endorsement, in The Star article

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah recently weighed in on the RCMP union’s endorsement of the ‘thin blue line’ symbol in an article titled “RCMP union pushes back against ban on ‘thin blue line’ symbol, says it has ordered custom patches” by Douglas Quan on The Star. In the article, he explains what the symbol means in today’s … Read More

The (lack of) diversity of Canada’s cannabis industry: report by Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah featured on CBC News and CBC Radio One

A recent report by Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah and Nazlee Maghsoudi of the Centre on Drug Policy Evaluation about the diversity of Canada’s cannabis industry leaders was featured on a CBC News article by Joyita Sengupta and a CBC Radio One interview. In these appearances, Professor Owusu-Bempah and Nazlee Maghsoudi cite the findings of their policy … Read More

Cannabis prohibition’s racial and gender disparities continue to thrive in the legalized cannabis industry: Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah publishes new article on The Globe and Mail

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah recently co-authored an article titled “Who is profiting off of cannabis in Canada? Not those who suffered most under cannabis prohibition” on The Globe and Mail with Nazlee Maghsoudi, a Knowledge Translation Manager at the Centre on Drug Policy Evaluation (CDPE) and a Doctoral Candidate in Health Services Research at the University of … Read More

Ph.D. student Eduardo Gutierrez Cornelius receives the Faculty of Arts and Science Doctoral Excellence Scholarship

Congratulations to Ph.D. student Eduardo Gutierrez Cornelius, who recently received the Faculty of Arts and Science Doctoral Excellence Scholarship. This award recognizes an academically excellent student who has a talent for research and knowledge mobilization and has demonstrated leadership potential.  Recipients of this award must show originality and significance in their body of work within their fields of research, … Read More

De-tasking police and restructuring community safety – Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah featured in discussion about police and public safety on The Agenda

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah recently appeared on an episode of The Agenda with Steve Paikin alongside former RCMP officer Chad Haggerty, London police chief Stephen Williams and staff lawyer at Black Legal Action Centre Fareeda Adam. They discussed the role of police in society, given recent events in the U.S. and Canada. In this conversation, Professor Akwasi … Read More

Report shows police are key drivers of racism against Black people: Akwasi Owusu-Bempah of UTM discusses the cycle of criminalization

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah was recently featured in an opinion piece in The Toronto Star by columnist Shree Paradkar. The story discusses a new report by the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) detailing how Toronto Police are more likely to criminalize and use violence during encounters with Black people. The article Are we OK living in … Read More

Congratulations to PhD student Eduardo Gutierrez Cornelius, recipient of Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship

Congratulations to Phd student Eduardo Gutierrez Cornelius, who recently learned that he was awarded one of the 2020 Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships! Vanier Canada Scholarships are among the most prestigious scholarships available to graduate students studying in Canadian institutions. Vanier scholars are chosen based on their academic excellence, research potential and leadership potential and demonstrated … Read More

Professor Sida Liu on China’s legal system and its components

Professor Sida Liu recently spoke to UTM News regarding the case of two Canadians facing espionage charges in China. Professor Liu is an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto, with teaching responsibilities on the UT Mississauga (UTM) campus. He is a faculty fellow at the American Bar Foundation. He is also an … Read More

Professor Julius Haag on violence and the inappropriate labelling of criminalization

Professor Julius Haag recently responded to a specific tweet on Twitter from Jamil Jivani. This tweet response, along with several other ones, including one by professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah, was picked up by CBC news. In his response to the tweet from Jamil Jivani, Professor Haag mentions the dangers of inappropriately labelling marginalized and criminalized people … Read More

Professor Joseph Hermer launches website for rapid response research on policing and homelessness amid COVID-19

Professor Joseph Hermer recently launched a website for a rapid response research initiative on policing and homelessness during the COVID-19. The initiative is funded by the Toronto COVID-19 Action Fund at the University of Toronto, Scarborough. In the following eight months, Professor Hermer and his research team will examine ways in which people experience homelessness … Read More

Professor Judith Taylor on White Men and Violence

Professor Judith Taylor recently wrote an op ed in The Toronto Star discussing white men and their violence. Judith Taylor is an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto, with teaching responsibilities on the St. George campus. Her research focuses on the intersection of feminist activism, community organizations, and social changes within public … Read More

Professor Julius Haag on The New Normal

Professor Julius Haag recently appeared on The New Normal with Maydianne Andrade, a weekly podcast. Professor Haag appeared, alongside Mark Campbell, on Part I of ‘Enough’ – a two-part episode to discuss the impacts of systematic anti-Black racism. He explains how the rise of violent policing and criminalization relates to the health-care system as well … Read More

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah on defunding the police

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah recently spoke to the Toronto Star about the movement to defund police in favour of community organizations  especially in the cases of mental health calls. We have included an excerpt of the article below. Professor Owusu-Bempah is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto, with teaching responsibilities at the … Read More

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah on how to reduce police violence

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah spoke to Mugglehead News in response to US House of Representatives suggesting that the War on Drugs was responsible for increases in police violence, particularly against Black people. While the US resolution called for greater accountability, Professor Owusu-Bempah argued that reducing the funding and scope of responsibilities of the police would more … Read More

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah speaks on podcast about Cannabis and the Criminalization of Black Canadians

Professor Akwasi Owusu-Bempah recently contributed to a Policy Options podcast entitled “Cannabis and the Criminalization of Black Canadians.” Policy Options is an online newsletter sponsored by the Institute for Public Policy Research.  It airs podcasts every second Wednesday. Professor Owusu-Bempah is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto. he has teaching responsibilities … Read More

Professor Joe Hermer on the impact of COVID-19 on the Homeless in Ontario

Professor Joe Hermer has recently co-authored an article in The Conversation discussing the need to protect the homeless during the pandemic. The article warns that police enforcing Ontario’s Safe Streets Act that targets homeless people will put them in danger, not only with the law, but also risk spreading the pandemic. Professor Hermer is an … Read More

Sociology Research Contributes to Lessening the Impact of COVID-19

Many of the Faculty in the Sociology Department have recently adjusted their research to address issues arising as a result of COVID-19 as well as the social distancing and economic shutdown that have been put in place to contain the pandemic. Four sociology faculty members have recently had their projects funded by the Toronto COVID-19 … Read More