EDMONTON, AB: United Conservative Party leader Jason Kenney today announced a program to help defray the costs of security improvements at community facilities that may be the target of hate-motivated crimes.
“Protecting public safety is the first responsibility of government,” said Kenney. “That is especially true for community groups that may be vulnerable to hate-motivated crimes. Here in Alberta, there have been disturbing reports of vandalism to mosques, temples synagogues, and churches. Improvements such as security cameras, fences, gates and other security measures can help protect these communities from violence and vandalism. That is why a United Conservative Party government will, if elected, create a Security Infrastructure Program to provide grants to defray these costs.”
Kenney said a million dollars annually would be allocated to the program. Funding would be available to religious groups at risk of being victimised by hate-motivated crime, on a matching grant basis up to $100,000.
Items allowed for purchase under the program would include:
- Alarm systems
- Security film for windows
- Closed-circuit television systems
- Exterior cameras (as well as their relocation)
- Anti-graffiti sealant
- Motion detectors
The UCP’s Security Infrastructure Program is modelled on a similar program which Jason Kenney helped to establish at the federal level, administered by Public Safety Canada.
“The federal Security Infrastructure Program (SIP) has helped hundreds of vulnerable community facilities to finance critical security infrastructure to help keep their members safe. I will never forget visiting the Gatineau Mosque and seeing how blast resistant film that had recently been installed on its windows helped to prevent an attempted fire bombing, thanks to a federal SIP grant.”
“Sadly, there has been an increase in vandalism and crimes targeting vulnerable communities in Alberta,” he added. “This investment in security is a practical way to help protect those who are targeted by hate motivated crimes, and to defend religious freedom.”
The program would be administered by the Ministry of Justice and Solicitor General.