EDMONTON, AB: Wildrose Shadow Justice Minister Angela Pitt launched the Alberta Crime Task Force, a new initiative by the Wildrose Caucus to consult directly with Albertans about the state of our justice system.
The task force will be chaired by Pitt and co-chaired by Wildrose MLA Don MacIntyre. The Crime Task Force will listen to Albertans directly about the impact of rising crime in Alberta and the effect of NDP government policies, and seek feedback on solutions to make communities safer.
Wildrose MLAs will be touring the province over the next several months and will then produce a report with recommendations for the government.
“Albertans know the justice system, as it stands, is failing our province, with accused criminals walking free because of a lack of resources while crime is on the rise,” Pitt said. “This task force was created to develop sound ideas to improve our system and work collaboratively with concerned families, local governments and law enforcement stakeholders to keep our streets safe.”
Albertans are encouraged to fill out the feedback survey at www.crimetaskforce.ca. All information provided online and in person will be factored into the Crime Task Force report.
MLAs will also be receiving feedback on previous policies Wildrose has advocated for, including:
- Increasing monitoring of violent offenders and stricter enforcement of conditions of release;
- Tasking a panel of legal experts to expedite prosecutions against gang members and criminal organizations;
- Pushing for tougher sentencing on trafficking and production on dangerous opioids like fentanyl; and,
- Introducing Bill 201, legislation that would have mandated public reporting of key justice system indicators including the sentencing records of judges in criminal cases, criminal plea-bargains, and bail orders and violations.
“In our cities and in rural Alberta, citizens are very concerned about the rise in crime, and they want the NDP government to do something about it,” MacIntyre said. “Our task force will work tirelessly to identify the key problems and gather recommendations that make our system more accountable to Albertans.”
- The most recent data available shows that from 2012-13 to 2014-15 the number of police-reported incidents increased by over 15 per cent and the number of charges commenced in Provincial Court increased by 23.4 per cent
- In the most recent Crime Severity Index, Alberta reported an 18 per cent increase, the largest of any province or territory
- Alberta has the third highest Crime Severity Index rating of all Canadian provinces
- Firearm thefts in Alberta have jumped 66 per cent in three years according to the RCMP
- According to Calgary Police, person crimes are up 7.6 per cent and property crimes are up 4.8 percent since 2015
- Grande Prairie was recently rated the most dangerous city in Canada by Statistics Canada, with both Red Deer and Edmonton well above the national average
- Macdonald-Laurier Institute Report Card on the Criminal Justice System released in 2016 revealed that Alberta received the worst grade in the country for fairness and access to the justice system
Wildrose Shadow Justice & Solicitor General Minister Angela Pitt and Innisfail-Sylvan Lake MLA Don MacIntyre held a press conference to announce the launch of the Wildrose Caucus’ Alberta Crime Task Force.
Audio of the press conference is available on Soundcloud.