Liberals are working to stop crime and make communities safer
Liberals are working today on Parliament Hill by hosting a roundtable and public forum on crime and community safety, focusing on successful, innovative solutions that communities are using to reduce crime.
“Our goal is to stop crime before it occurs,” said Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff, who attended today’s panel. “The Harper government’s ‘tough on crime’ rhetoric is the furthest thing from the open and honest debate we need to create safer communities.”
The roundtable and public forum will hear from leading experts in the area of crime prevention, including law enforcement officials, academics, and community organizations that deal first hand with effects of crime. Ottawa Police Chief Vern White will be on hand to talk about some of his police force’s successful crime-fighting initiatives, including the Direct Action Response Team (DART), which has proven to be the most successful approach in eradicating gang culture and gang violence. Community representatives from across the country have been invited to take part in the discussion, to share their experiences and ask questions of the experts and Parliamentarians.
“Solutions to reduce crime, prevent victimization and enhance community safety are out there, and lawmakers just need to listen,” said Liberal Public Safety and National Security Critic Mark Holland. “The Harper government has closed their ears, insisting instead on adopting discredited Republican policies that put more people in prison for longer at exorbitant expense to the taxpayer. If we look south to the United States, we can see that these same policies are being abandoned because they have failed to reduce crime and bankrupted the public purse.”
“We believe that there must be appropriate sentences for serious crimes,” said Liberal Justice Critic Dominic Leblanc. “But unlike the Conservative government, Liberals don’t think the solution is to build super prisons that create more dangerous criminals, perpetuating an endless cycle of victimization, as they are recycled through our justice system.”