Monday, January 30, 2012

Safety for Manitobans

January 30, 2012


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Community Safety, Crime Prevention, Major Themes of Recent Ministers' Meetings: Swan
Justice Minister Andrew Swan today said he was encouraged by the consensus reached at recent meetings of justice ministers on the need to focus on crime prevention as the best way to assure long-term community safety.
“Manitobans will be glad to know the focus of justice ministers across the country was public safety and crime prevention,” said Swan.  “I was pleased to see the discussion at our meetings focused on efforts like problem-solving courts among other tools to increase public safety.  In Manitoba, we continue to take steps to enhance courts of this kind such as our successful drug-treatment court and mental-health court which will soon see its first case.” 
The ministers met Jan. 24 to 26, in Charlottetown, PEI.  Swan said the agenda focused on the priorities of Manitobans and ensuring safer communities.  Among other items, ministers discussed:
  • stable, reliable and more equitable funding formula for legal aid;
  • expanded federal support for drug-treatment and mental-health courts;
  • continuation and expansion of the First Nations Policing Program; and
  • mandatory minimum sentences for premeditated knife crimes and new stand-alone offences for carjackings and home invasions with sentences that reflect the seriousness of these crimes.
Ministers also directed their deputy ministers to provide a renewed focus on prevention and rehabilitation, and on access to justice and justice system reform.  Ministers prioritized these areas to strengthen provincial efforts at combating the root causes of crime and to ensure all individuals involved in the justice system are treated fairly, said Swan.
“Manitobans have the right to feel safe in their neighbourhoods and their homes,” he said.  Manitobans had their voices heard loud and clear in Charlottetown.”
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