Professional Standards

The OPS takes the investigation of complaints very seriously, fully understanding the impact that police conduct and policies can have on members of our community. We emphasize the value of providing courteous, respectful and effective service to Ottawa residents.

One of the ways we seek to earn public trust is by ensuring we have levels of oversight that hold our service and members accountable. As delegated by the Chief of Police, our Professional Standards Section (PSS) has the authority to investigate and facilitate resolution of internally generated complaints (Chief’s complaints) and public complaints generated through the Office of the Independent Police Review Director (OIPRD).

The PSS has taken an active role in educating supervisors in resolving complaints. This allows for a better dialogue between complainants and supervisors and promotes a quicker alternative to resolving issues that arise in the course of daily operations.

Each type of complaint is classified according to the type of allegation that was made. In a situation where an officer is facing more than one allegation, the complaint is classified using the most serious allegation. The classification provides an idea of the types of situations that generate complaint investigations.

Complaints Received graphic

Complaints Received by Category graphic

In total 360 complaints were filed in 2018, representing a two percent increase from 2017. There was a slight increase in both the number of Chief’s complaints (+4%) and in the number of public complaints (+4%) in 2018.

Improper conduct includes a broad range of allegations ranging from inappropriate actions such as unauthorized search and seizure, red light camera infractions, poor judgment, at fault motor vehicle collisions, abuse of authority, breach of confidentiality, and insubordination. In 2018, complaints of improper conduct increased by nine percent from 2017.

Further information on all PSS activities and how to make a complaint can be accessed at

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