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Section II: Analysis of Program Activities

This section of the Report describes the Department’s progress towards its Strategic Outcome (as detailed in the 2007-08 Report on Plans and Priorities) and discusses each Program Activity’s role in contributing to this progress.

Analysis by Program Activity

In 2007-08, Public Safety Canada’s expected results were linked to its Strategic Outcome, and were organized according to three key program activities, all of which had their own expected results:

  • Emergency Management and National Security;
  • Policing and Law Enforcement; and
  • Community Safety and Partnerships.

Analysis by program activity

In 2007-08, the Department made reasonable progress on meeting the expected results outlined for each Program Activity, thus advancing its goal of enhancing the public safety, security and emergency preparedness of Canadians.

Emergency Management and National Security developed and implemented legislation and policies, as well as managed programs that helped to mitigate threats and protect Canada and Canadians. This included providing support to ensure the successful passage of the Emergency Management Act, the Act to Amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, and support to provinces and territories for response and recovery through the Disaster Financial Assistance Arrangements.

Policing and Law Enforcement enhanced capabilities to combat serious and organized crime through the development and establishment of the Police Officers Recruitment Fund, implementation of the National Anti-Drug Strategy, and the Ministerial Organized Crime Summit. In addition, the Department developed and implemented policies aimed at strengthening the management and accountability of the RCMP, and ensuring compliance by firearms owners with their obligations under the Firearms Act.

Lastly, Community Safety and Partnerships contributed to a reduction in crime and increased personal safety through the National Crime Prevention Centre, the First Nations Policing Program, as well as the National Flagging System for High-Risk Offenders.

The tables below provide the total planned financial and human resources associated with the achievement of the Department’s Strategic Outcome, as well as the allocation of resources by Program Activity.

Financial Resources by Program Activity (in thousands of dollars)

Program Activity Planned Spending Total Authorities Actual Spending
Emergency Management and National Security 232,183 230,473 153,788
Policing and Law Enforcement 36,946 55,118 49,092
Community Safety and Partnerships 189,146 158,575 137,026
Total 458,275 444,166 339,906

The difference between actual spending and total authorities ($104M) is mainly due to less spending than anticipated on grants and contributions related to the Disaster Financial Assistance Arrangements Program, the National Crime Prevention Centre and the Communities At-Risk, Minor Security Infrastructure Pilot Program (total of $86M), and a lapse in the Department’s Operating Budget ($16M). For further information, please refer to Table 1 in Section IV.

Human Resources by Program Activity (in full-time equivalents)

Program Activity Planned Actual
Emergency Management and National Security 580 386
Policing and Law Enforcement 160 131
Community Safety and Partnerships 255 310
Total 995 827

Emergency Management and National Security

Public Safety Canada works to mitigate threats and protect Canadians by collaborating with international counterparts, federal departments, provinces, territories, the first responder community and industry.

The Emergency Management activity addresses all hazards (natural, technological and human-induced) through the development of an integrated approach to emergency management, legislation and national strategies, as well as training and standards for those who protect Canada and Canadians. Through a close relationship with international counterparts, federal departments, provinces, territories, first responders and industry, Public Safety Canada supports effective policy and program coordination and delivery across the four pillars of emergency management: prevention/mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery.

In advancing Canada’s national security objectives, Public Safety Canada’s goal is to develop new, and coordinate the review of existing, policies and legislation. Canada’s approach to national security is strategic and proactive, and embraces the values of democracy, human rights, respect for the rule of law and pluralism. Accordingly, the Department pursues its efforts collaboratively with key federal, domestic and international partners. In this context, the Department continued to work with other departments and agencies on the implementation of recommendations identified in Part 1 of Mr. Justice O’Connor’s Report. The Department advanced policy analysis with respect to Canada's national security review framework in response to recommendations flowing from the policy review undertaken by the Commission of Inquiry into the Actions of Canadian Officials in Relation to Maher Arar. The Department continues to work in concert with Portfolio agencies and other government departments to support ongoing national security related Commissions of Inquiry (e.g. Air India and Iacobucci).

Performance Highlights

  • The Emergency Management Act came into force on August 3, 2007.
  • New Disaster Financial Assistance Arrangements guidelines were implemented January 1, 2008.
  • The Canadian Emergency Management College provided training to over 5,800 federal, provincial and territorial officials, as well as first responders.
  • Approximately 3,500 events (natural and man-made hazards, national security threats, and planned events) were monitored, reported on or supported.
  • An Act to amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (security certificates and special advocates) came into force on February 22, 2008.
  • Assessed over 50 departmental Business Continuity Plans (BCP), responded to 530 BCP requests for assistance and provided BCP assessment information toward the development and implementation of a new Management Accountability Framework (MAF) indicator.

In 2007-08, the Department worked towards developing programs and policies that helped to protect and mitigate threats to Canada and Canadians.

To achieve this objective in 2007-08, the Department undertook and made reasonable progress on:

  • Strengthening emergency management capacity, critical infrastructure protection and federal emergency response capacity;
  • Reviewing and improving national security policies, legislation and arrangements;
  • Coordinating the security agenda of the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America; and
  • Providing interdepartmental leadership to develop, negotiate and implement improved Canada-United States emergency border management.

Strengthening emergency management capacity, critical infrastructure protection, and federal emergency response capacity

Work under this initiative included passage of the Emergency Management Act, federal emergency response support, emergency preparedness, development of a National Disaster Mitigation Strategy, critical infrastructure protection, the National Pandemic Plan, and cyber security.

Passage of the Emergency Management Act

In August of 2007, a new Emergency Management Act came into force, establishing the Minister of Public Safety’s leadership role for emergency management and critical infrastructure protection activities on behalf of the federal government, as well as outlining an integrated approach to emergency management activities based on four pillars. Emergency recovery includes the Disaster Financial Assistance Arrangements (DFAA), whose guidelines were amended to expand eligibility and streamline the process to provide financial compensation for the costs incurred by provincial and territorial governments for natural disaster response and recovery. This amendment came into effect on January 1, 2008.

Emergency management outreach is an important activity that helps promote and support information-sharing, emergency management planning, training and exercises to synchronize national preparedness efforts among federal partners and with key stakeholder groups. Frequent consultations, new agreements and joint initiatives were undertaken in 2007-08 with a range of stakeholders from government, voluntary organizations and first responders. Agreements were formalized with St-John Ambulance and the Canadian Red Cross in 2007 to further integrate emergency management preparedness and response.

Federal emergency response support

The Department provided emergency response support to other government departments in order to promote an integrated federal emergency response to events of national significance, including cyber related events. In 2007-08, Public Safety Canada provided support through continuous monitoring and reporting. This included the provision of products to support senior officials and Ministers; risk assessments, alerting and warning products to support responder communities, contingency plans to guide an integrated “whole of government” response and logistical support.

The Department’s emergency communications unit worked to enhance the Government of Canada’s capacity to coordinate federal public communications during a major or national emergency situation. These efforts were integral to supporting other operational planning and coordination efforts and comprised:

  • development of Government of Canada emergency communications protocols;
  • development of Government of Canada and departmental emergency communications contingency plans; and
  • ongoing improvement of federal capacity through emergency communications exercises as well as post-emergency reviews.

Emergency preparedness

Emergency preparedness programs support the preparedness of provinces and territories through joint programming that enhances the ability of first responders and emergency management personnel to respond to and recover from emergencies (e.g., the Joint Emergency Preparedness Program). Emergency Preparedness also contributes to Canada’s disaster resiliency by ensuring that proper emergency management plans are in place within federal government departments, including the development and review of business continuity plans.

Training and exercises are also important components of emergency preparedness. The Canadian Emergency Management College worked with federal, provincial and territorial partners, and emergency management personnel to enhance emergency management training, and education. During 2007-08, the College provided training to over 5,800 federal, provincial and territorial officials and emergency management personnel. In addition, Public Safety Canada led the development of a Government of Canada Integrated Exercise Strategy, including a five-year exercise calendar, and conducted eight exercises, allowing the Department to assess and evaluate plans, processes and protocols.

National Disaster Mitigation Strategy

In January 2008, federal/provincial/territorial (F/P/T) Ministers responsible for Emergency Management supported the National Disaster Mitigation Strategy (NDMS) and agreed to move ahead on its implementation. The NDMS describes how federal, provincial and territorial governments work collaboratively to advance disaster risk reduction initiatives across the country and promotes disaster mitigation as an integral part of emergency management planning.

Critical infrastructure protection

Critical infrastructure protection is a key component of emergency management. The Department is committed to developing a national approach to strengthening the resilience of critical infrastructure to protect essential services that are vital to the well-being of Canadians. During 2007-08, the Department developed a draft document, “Working Towards a National Strategy and Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure,” in collaboration with provincial and territorial partners. The approach is focused on partnerships, information-sharing and risk management, to promote a high level of readiness and an effective capacity to respond to disruptions. The objective is to finalize a Strategy and Action Plan in January 2009.

National Pandemic Plan

Public Safety Canada undertook pandemic planning on a national basis, focusing on identifying and addressing gaps in health and emergency management plans. In 2007-08, the Committee of Assistant Deputy Ministers on Avian and Pandemic Influenza Planning supported the Government of Canada Coordination Contingency Plan for Avian and Pandemic Influenza; further consultations across the federal government are required to finalize the plan. Public Safety Canada also developed, in collaboration with the U.S and Mexico the North American Plan for Pandemic and Influenza which was approved at the North American Leaders’ Summit held in Montebello, QC, in August 2007.

Cyber security

Throughout 2007-08, Public Safety Canada continued to increase its capacity and capability to support a federally-integrated response to cyber incidents. The Department facilitated the development of appropriate cyber security mitigation strategies through quality products intended for government departments/ agencies and the critical infrastructure sector. Through its Canadian Cyber Incident Response Centre, the Department coordinated the federal response to 113 cyber events and disseminated over 150 advisories and reports to federal departments, provincial governments and the critical infrastructure sector. The Department also implemented a malware (malicious software) analysis laboratory to provide mitigation strategies to members of the Canadian Cyber Incident Response Centre.

Reviewing and improving national security policies

The Department continued to work closely with its domestic and international partners to identify and develop effective responses to emerging threats. Public Safety Canada also continued to play a leadership role in supporting relevant national security related commissions and inquiries.

Public Safety Canada led the preparation of amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (certificates and special advocates), which were passed by Parliament and received Royal Assent on February 22, 2008. The security certificate process, part of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, is an important tool that enhances the safety and security of Canada and Canadians. This legislation addresses the February 2007 Supreme Court ruling (Charkaoui v. Canada) that additional safeguards be incorporated into the process to better protect the rights of individuals subject to a certificate.

Through initiatives such as the Cross Cultural Roundtable on Security (CCRS), the Department continued in its efforts to protect Canadians and build mutual understanding between the Government of Canada and its diverse communities through ongoing dialogue on national security issues. During the 2007-08 year, the Department adjusted the management of the CCRS in four key areas, including membership, leadership, outreach, and the size of the budget allocated to support the work of the CCRS, and began the process of staggered membership renewal. In addition, a targeted evaluation of the CCRS was undertaken. Results will be analyzed early in fiscal year 2008-09.

Over the course of the past few years, Public Safety Canada also continued to work closely with the Air India Victims’ Families Association, as well as provincial and municipal governments to implement the Government of Canada’s commitment to construct permanent memorials, in four Canadian cities, to the victims of Air India flight 182. The first memorial was unveiled in Toronto on June 23, 2007, and a second in Vancouver on July 26, 2007.

Coordinating the Security Agenda of the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America

In keeping with the departmental priority of providing interdepartmental leadership to enhance border integrity, the Department provided leadership on the development of policies, programs and procedures to enhance border security and emergency management cooperation, while facilitating and expediting legitimate trade and travel. Along with federal and provincial partners, the Department sought to further improve cross-border law enforcement cooperation, particularly with the United States. Public Safety Canada coordinated the security initiatives of the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) of North America, resulting in a more focused approach centered on “smart and secure borders,” and “emergency management”. In collaboration with other departments and agencies, including Industry Canada, the Department prepared for and advanced Canada’s interests in the lead up to the Leaders’ Summits in Montebello, Qubec and New Orleans, Louisiana.

In 2007-08, the Department continued to work with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to advance a variety of operational initiatives and policies, including working to ensure the successful implementation of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, and legislative amendments to the Customs Act. The Department also contributed to the policy development of immigration proposals, including the 2008 Annual Immigration Levels Plan announced in November 2007. This involved working with the RCMP, CSIS, and the CBSA to identify operational and policy implications as well as funding requirements for the Portfolio.

The Great Lakes Marine Security Operations Centre (GL-MSOC) is an information gathering and analysis Centre where representatives from key departments and agencies work together to collect, analyze and distribute information pertaining to possible threats on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway to support coordinated response activities among appropriate departments/agencies. Established with interim funding in 2005, the GL-MSOC enhances the safety and security of the maritime transportation system and is a key national security initiative. In 2007-08, Public Safety Canada was successful in leading an interdepartmental effort that resulted in funding for the creation of a permanent GL-MSOC that will significantly bolster the capacity and capability of the Centre (Budget 2008 provided $15 million over two years towards its establishment).

Providing interdepartmental leadership to develop, negotiate and implement improved Canada-United States emergency and security border management

Work under this initiative included the coordination of Canada’s participation in the “TOPOFF IV” exercise, and the renewal of the 1986 Canada-U.S. agreement on cooperation and civil emergency planning, and Portfolio-wide policy coordination of strategic policy issues related to effective border management of Canada’s shared border with the U.S.

Public Safety Canada continued its efforts to renew the 1986 Canada-U.S. Agreement on Emergency Management Cooperation. Work is underway to manage the movement of goods and people across the Canada/U.S. border during and following an emergency.

The Department, in conjunction with Justice Canada, successfully coordinated the 10th Annual Cross-Border Crime Forum (CBCF) in 2007-08. This Forum serves as a key mechanism to bring together Canadian ministers of Public Safety and Justice, the U.S. Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security, as well as over 120 senior government officials from Canada and the U.S., to focus specifically on identifying and resolving operational and policy impediments faced by law enforcement and justice officials who work on cross-border issues. During the 10th CBCF, Canadian and U.S. ministers jointly announced or released a number of important milestone documents, including joint Canada-U.S. threat assessments on illegal cross-border activities, drugs and mass-marketing fraud; best practices in the development and prosecution of cross-border terrorism cases; and a public advisory on counterfeit checks and money orders.

In addition, at the 10th CBCF, the Department, along with Foreign Affairs and International Trade and the Department of Justice, launched formal negotiations with the U.S. on the development of a bi-national framework agreement to govern integrated cross-border maritime law enforcement operations, also known as “Shiprider”. Shiprider entails vessels jointly crewed by specially trained and designated Canadian and U.S. law enforcement officers who are authorized to enforce the law on both sides of the international boundary line. Working together, Canadian and U.S. law enforcement officers are able to transit back and forth across the border to deal with cross-border criminality in shared waterways.

To support the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP), the Department contributed to the development of a Government-wide communications strategy to provide Canadians with clear, consistent and accessible information about the SPP and its benefits to Canadians. A consolidated website was developed for the SPP, which outlines cooperative efforts with the United States and Mexico, shares priorities and regularly updates Canadians on initiatives.

For further detailed performance information on the initiatives that support this PA, please refer to:

Policing and Law Enforcement

Public Safety Canada provides leadership to the Canadian law enforcement community on strategic, law enforcement-based responses to new and evolving crime and public safety threats. This includes leading or assisting in the development of legislation, policies and national strategies that enhance police efforts to combat crime in Canadian communities, improve border security and contribute to joint anti-crime efforts with international partners.

Through collaboration with federal, provincial, territorial and international partners, the Department develops strategies to enhance the Canadian law enforcement community’s capability to combat serious and organized crime. In this context, in 2007-08 the Department undertook the following key initiatives:

  • efforts to combat serious, organized and transnational crime;
  • developed and implemented strategies to combat gun violence; and
  • enhanced information-sharing and interoperability among federal departments and agencies and with other jurisdictions.

In addition, the Department also placed a particular focus on the following initiatives:

  • bolstering law enforcement capacity within Canada; and
  • strengthening the management and accountability of the RCMP.

Performance Highlights

  • Development of a five-year Police Officer Recruitment Fund to assist provinces and territories in hiring new police officers across Canada.
  • Establishment of an integrated team to support the renewal of the Police Services Agreements.
  • Development of a response to the Report of the Task Force on Governance and Cultural Change in the RCMP.
  • Successful Federal/Provincial/ Territorial Organized Crime Summit.

Focusing efforts to combat serious, organized and transnational crime

Renewing and enhancing efforts to combat serious and organized crime was a key priority for the Department in 2007-08. In support of the National Agenda to Combat Organized Crime, the Department strengthened its work with Portfolio agencies and expanded its coordination efforts with federal, provincial and territorial partners to share information, as well as develop, enhance and implement policies and law enforcement tools to assist those on the front line of the fight against serious and organized crime.

During the past year, the Department significantly strengthened its role in supporting and providing leadership to the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) on Organized Crime, as well as to its regional/provincial coordinating committees. Under the leadership of the Department, the NCC, which is composed of senior federal-provincial-territorial officials and senior law enforcement officers, convenes at least twice a year to discuss emerging issues and national policy priorities required to advance the fight against organized crime.

In 2007-08, with the assistance of the NCC and other federal-provincial-territorial and law enforcement partners, the Department assumed a lead role in hosting a first-ever Ministerial Forum on Organized Crime. This Forum provided a unique opportunity for federal-provincial-territorial Ministers responsible for justice and public safety to come together with senior government and law enforcement officials from Canada, as well as with senior representatives from international policing agencies, to explore the particular challenges associated with organized crime. The success of this Forum led the Department to host, with its partners, a federal-provincial-territorial Organized Crime Summit for senior government and law enforcement officials. This Summit served as a mechanism to advance Ministerial priorities, identify new priorities and create a new foundation to advance the fight against organized crime on a national scale.

In addition to the gains made with its partners in coordinating and advancing broad goals, the Department also maintained and reinforced its leadership role on a number of key initiatives focused on specific aspects of serious and organized crime. The Department continued to lead, expand and strengthen Canada’s National Strategy for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation on the Internet. The goals of this Strategy are to enhance law enforcement capacity, support public education and reporting, and forge new partnerships with industry and non-governmental organizations to protect Canada’s children.

The Department played a significant role in the policy development and coordination of the National Anti-Drug Strategy (NADS), particularly with respect to the Enforcement Action Plan. Implementation of this Strategy will contribute to safer and healthier communities through coordinated efforts to prevent use, treat dependency and reduce the production and distribution of illicit drugs.

The Department also continued to provide policy leadership and support to initiatives already underway such as the Integrated Proceeds of Crime Initiative, the First Nations Organized Crime Initiative, efforts to combat the violation of intellectual property rights and contraband tobacco. Finally, the Department provided substantial policy leadership to identify and implement enhancements to the Integrated Market Enforcement Teams Initiative.

Developing and implementing strategies to combat gun violence

The Department focused on effective gun control and compliance measures that promote public safety and remove unnecessary administrative burdens. In this context, a number of initiatives were developed and advanced.

Enhanced screening was put in place for new firearms licence applicants such that, on an annual basis, 20,000 new licence applicants and their two references will be interviewed by a firearms officer before determining if applicants should be issued their first firearms licence.

In addition, a short-term action plan was developed to enable individuals to comply with the Firearms Act, including an amnesty extension to May 2009, licensing fee waivers, and renewal of Possession Only Licences. Increasing program compliance helps ensure that firearms owners who comply with licensing and registration requirements are then subject to Continuous Eligibility Screening. This ensures that any high risk behaviour on the part of firearms owners is considered and automatically brought to the attention of law enforcement officials.

Enhancing information-sharing and interoperability among federal departments and agencies and with other jurisdictions

The Department has a lead role in promoting information-sharing between federal departments and agencies engaged in protecting public safety and security.

The Secret Communications Interoperability Pilot Project, an electronic communications system capable of transmitting classified information among federal public safety and security partners, was developed by March 31, 2008.

The Department made significant progress on initiatives such as the National Integrated Interagency Information System (N-III) and Data Standardization. N-III is a system that allows law enforcement agencies to share critical information needed to carry out their public safety and law enforcement duties. Advancements were also made in standardizing data and, through the Cross Border Crime Forum, developing common standards between Canada and the U.S.

Voice communications interoperability is critical to our ability to respond to emergencies and to manage major events. Public Safety Canada continues to work with the first responder community to develop a national strategy and to identify the necessary requirements to advance this issue with a view to presenting a proposal to federal and provincial/territorial officials responsible for first responder and voice communications in 2009-10. A necessary first step was accomplished in 2007-08 when the first responder community created the Canadian Interoperability Technology Interest Group of the Canadian Police Research Centre. This work will lead to the development of a strategic plan that addresses both domestic and international voice interoperability and the development of a governance model that will incorporate federal, provincial and territorial requirements.

Bolstering law enforcement capacity within Canada

Public Safety Canada developed and supported the establishment of the $400 million Police Officer Recruitment Fund, which supports the efforts of provinces and territories in recruiting 2,500 new front-line police officers to target local crimes and make communities safer. The structure of this Fund provides the necessary flexibility for provinces and territories to invest in public safety priorities that best meet their individual needs. The $400 million funding represents a significant contribution to policing costs incurred by the provinces and territories over the next five years. By March 31, 2008, all provinces and territories confirmed their commitment to participate in this Fund.

In addition, in 2007-08, the Department received a negotiating mandate from the Government and established an integrated team comprised of Public Safety Canada and RCMP officials to support re-negotiation and renewal of the Police Services Agreements that govern contract policing provided by the RCMP. These agreements extend the RCMP's local policing services to eight provinces, three territories and over 180 Canadian municipalities.

The Police Services Agreements allow the RCMP to function at the provincial and local levels, in addition to its national, federal and international responsibilities. The agreements promote the integration of criminal intelligence, and the integration of technical and human resources from the "street" level, through regional, national and international levels. These agreements are instrumental in helping the RCMP fight serious, organized, and transnational crime.

Strengthening the management and accountability of the RCMP

The Department supported the independent investigation into matters relating to RCMP pension and insurance plans announced by the Minister of Public Safety. The Report of the Independent Investigator was released on June 15, 2007.

The Government accepted all the recommendations presented in the Report of the Independent Investigator and took several actions in response: the Minister of Public Safety moved to direct the RCMP to institute improvements in its disciplinary process; the RCMP Commissioner recognized the five RCMP employees who reported mismanagement of the pension plan; and, the Task Force on Governance and Cultural Change in the RCMP was established to consider the challenges faced by the RCMP and make recommendations to transform the RCMP according to modern governance principles of accountability and transparency.

Public Safety Canada also supported the Task Force on Governance and Cultural Change in the RCMP and, when released in December 2007, helped prepare the Government’s response to the Report of the Task Force. The Department worked with the RCMP to examine and implement a range of short-term measures to strengthen the management and accountability of the RCMP, which were identified in the Report of the Task Force.

Additionally, the Department developed the Terms of Reference and provided support to the establishment of the RCMP Reform Implementation Council, which is mandated to: provide advice to the Minister of Public Safety on the status of those reforms approved by the Government; provide advice and assistance to the Commissioner on the RCMP’s internal implementation plan for responding to the Task Force Report’s recommendations; and, report regularly to the Minister of Public Safety on progress. Reports of the Council will be made public.

With regard to Conducted Energy Weapons, the Department worked with the RCMP and other partners to strengthen policies and procedures related to the use of Conducted Energy Weapons. In 2007-08, the Department worked with the RCMP and provincial and territorial partners to compile a comprehensive list of current policies and practices regarding law enforcement’s use of Conducted Energy Weapons (CEWs) in Canada. This work resulted in the identification of key issues such as the need for standardized use of force models, and enhanced data collection and accountability in relation to the use of CEWs, meriting further examination by officials. The results of this work were presented to and endorsed by federal/provincial/territorial Ministers responsible for Justice.

For further detailed performance information on the initiatives that support this PA, please refer to:

Community Safety and Partnerships

This Program Activity supports the enhancement of community safety and security and seeks to reduce crime and increase personal safety. Utilizing a targeted approach, the Department responds to local concerns and preoccupations in partnership with provinces, territories, municipalities, First Nations, Inuit communities, and non-governmental organizations dedicated to public safety.

In 2007-08, Public Safety Canada sought to meet this Program Activity’s expected result of reducing crime and increasing personal safety and made reasonable progress on the following key initiatives:

  • Assessing and supporting local crime prevention measures addressing, in particular, gang-related crime, as well as substance-related crime;
  • Developing correctional policy to better address the management of high-risk offenders; and
  • Designing innovative policies and programs to enhance public safety in First Nations communities through culturally-sensitive crime prevention measures, law enforcement and corrections.

As crime issues are not necessarily unique to a particular community, the dissemination of knowledge regarding crime prevention best practices, Aboriginal policing and corrections is crucial to the continuous improvement of effective interventions. In 2007-08, the Department provided funding to 224 crime prevention projects, supported the development of legislative proposals, and developed and implemented non-legislative initiatives that aim to strengthen the criminal justice system. Public Safety Canada also continued to develop and implement strategies aimed at supporting Aboriginal offenders and their communities. The Department managed 163 First Nations Policing Program agreements in 399 communities across Canada and continued its work to enhance public safety in First Nation and Inuit communities.

Performance Highlights

  • Provided funding to 224 crime prevention projects.
  • Trained probation officers to more effectively supervise moderate and high-risk offenders.
  • Negotiated and monitored First Nations Policing Program agreements and developed strategies for sustainability of the First Nations Policing Policy.

Assessing and supporting local crime prevention measures addressing, in particular, gang-related crime and drug- and alcohol-related crime

In June 2007, the Minister of Public Safety announced a more focused approach for the Department’s National Crime Prevention Centre (NCPC). Since June 2007, the NCPC has focused on four specific priorities, which were established in partnership with key stakeholders. The priorities are to:

  • address early risk factors among vulnerable families and children and youth at risk;
  • respond to priority crime issues (youth gangs, drug-related crime);
  • prevent recidivism among high-risk groups; and
  • foster prevention in Aboriginal communities.

In 2007-08, the Department funded new projects that aligned with the new NCPC priorities. Thirteen youth gang prevention projects received funding under the Youth Gang Prevention Fund (YGPF) for a total amount of $1.76 million in eight cities across Canada – Halifax, Montral, Hamilton, Oshawa, St. Catharines, Winnipeg, Prince Albert and Regina. The Department also supported cities facing youth gang problems by actively disseminating up-to-date information on risk factors and promising practices.

In 2007-08, 86 new projects aligned with the new priorities received funding under the Crime Prevention Action Fund and the Research and Knowledge Development Fund. The Department also contributed to the Prevention Action Plan of the National Anti-Drug Strategy (NADS) by committing to redirect a portion of NCPC’s existing funds to provide assistance to communities affected by drug-related crime. In 2007-08, six NCPC funded projects were identified as meeting the criteria of the NADS and an additional 13 project proposals were received for consideration.

The NCPC also developed and disseminated practical knowledge to inform practitioners and policy makers to foster effective crime prevention interventions. In 2007-08, the NCPC produced 29 publications, including a series of research reports on youth gangs, on the prevention of recidivism and summaries of the evaluations of NCPC funded projects to inform future crime prevention efforts.

In July 2007, the Department received the Interim Evaluation of the National Crime Prevention Strategy (NCPS). The Interim Evaluation indicated that despite significant challenges in its last two years, the NCPC had been making progress in meeting its objectives, including funding a higher proportion of projects through contribution agreements and emphasizing multi-year, strategic crime prevention projects. The Interim Evaluation also confirmed that the new focused approach of the NCPC, announced in June 2007, had resulted in several concrete actions aimed at addressing concerns raised in the evaluation.

Additionally, the Department created a two-year pilot program to support communities at risk of hate-motivated crime. This pilot program provided funding, not available elsewhere, for minor capital infrastructure projects to not-for-profit community centres, provincially recognized educational facilities and places of worship. In 2007-08, to ensure that local communities were aware of the pilot program, outreach activities were undertaken in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Winnipeg, Edmonton and Halifax. The outreach activities targeted diverse communities from across the country at risk of hate-motivated crime. The pilot project approved 11 projects in 2007-08.

Developing correctional policy to better address the management of high-risk offenders

In 2007-08, Public Safety Canada conducted ongoing consultations with a federal/provincial/territorial Working Group on issues related to high-risk offenders and implemented non-legislative initiatives, including enhancements to the National Flagging System for High-Risk Offenders. Research projects were conducted to support policies that enhanced the identification and supervision of high-risk offenders.

The Department continued the implementation of the Effective Corrections Initiative, in collaboration with Correctional Service Canada and the National Parole Board, to support the safe management of eligible offenders in the community. Key activities supporting public education and citizen engagement were also completed in 2007-08, such as the launch of a “Corrections and Criminal Justice Speakers’ Series” that improved links to Canadian universities and raised awareness about criminal justice topics; the publication and dissemination of numerous correctional research reports and summaries; and the development of improved government ties with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. The Department also focused on strategies aimed at supporting Aboriginal offenders and their communities, including testing and evaluating community-based projects; publishing and disseminating reports on successful Aboriginal community corrections and healing initiatives; updating resource materials for Aboriginal offenders returning to the community; and increasing open dialogue with Aboriginal communities concerning federal corrections and the reintegration process.

Designing innovative policies and programs to enhance public safety in First Nations communities by supporting culturally-appropriate policing

In 2007-08, the Department managed 163 First Nations Policing Program (FNPP) agreements across Canada (including Self-Administered and Community Tripartite Agreements) in 399 communities with an overall population of 317,331. This is an increase of five agreements from 2006-07. Currently, the FNPP provides for 1212 police officer positions, an increase of 35 positions from 2006-07.

For further detailed performance information on the initiatives that support this PA, please refer to: