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Mendicino speaks to RCMP to help heal boarding school trauma

OTTAWA –

Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino is directing the head of the RCMP to work closely with Indigenous communities to address the traumatic legacy of neighborhood schools.

In a new mandate letter sent to RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki, Mendicino directs the national police force to proactively disclose documents, help uncover the truth and enable alternative forms of investigation when communities fellow “seeks justice at their own pace.”

The Liberal Government says the discovery of unmarked graves and burial sites near former residential schools underscores the need to move faster on the road to reconciliation with the First Peoples, Inuit and Métis.

In that way, some of the Ministerial directives to the RCMP are intended to foster improved relations with Indigenous Peoples.

Mendicino said he looks forward to working with Lucki to accelerate RCMP reform over the next two years by improving force recruitment at all levels to better reflect the communities it serves, in particular. are Natives and Negroes.

He directed the RCMP boss to conduct a contract policy review in consultation with provinces, territories, centrally-governed cities, indigenous partners and others, and in cooperation with other stakeholders. partners in the “stabilization and expansion” of the First Nations and Inuit Policy Program.

The letter updates a letter sent to Lucki when she was appointed commissioner in 2018.

Mendicino wrote: “As you know, the prime minister has tasked me with taking action in several important areas, and many of these are related to the work of the RCMP. “Most notably, he asked me to prioritize policing reform.”

The minister said his central goals are to ensure the RCMP meets the needs of Canadians, tackle systemic racism, eliminate harassment and discrimination, and create a culture of accountability, diversity and inclusion.

In the newly issued credentials to the other agency heads in its portfolio, Mendicino instructs:

– Director of Canadian Security Intelligence David Vigneault to support broader efforts to protect economic security, including research and intellectual property, and to address threats to institutions of democracy by investigating all forms of ideologically motivated violent extremism as those motivated by worldviews based on xenophobia and opposition to authority;

– Canada Border Services President John Ossowski to combat illegal drug and arms trafficking and tackle illegal migration by increasing the efficiency of processing asylum claims;

– Commissioner Anne Kelly of Corrections Canada to support government work to address systemic racism and the over-representation of Blacks and Indigenous peoples in the justice system, as well as creating a new position as deputy commissioner of Indigenous corrections.

Among the tasks outlined in the RCMP’s letter to Lucki, Mendicino called for support for measures to combat handgun smuggling and the implementation of a program to buy back banned firearms.

He also asked for help in ensuring that the RCMP’s management advisory board is fully supported as it assumes a larger supervisory role.

Mendicino writes: “Victims of intimate partner violence deserve our protection.

To that end, he asked Lucki to work with firearms chiefs across Canada so that they would respond without delay to calls from Canadians with safety concerns about anyone with gun rights and work with authorized police to remove firearms quickly when needed. .

In addition, Lucki was asked to provide awareness and training on the importance of recording incidents involving dangerous behavior and firearms. “This work will also involve implementing new educational tools and procedures in close collaboration with community groups, women’s organizations and shelters, academia and more.” again.”


This Canadian Press report was first published on May 10, 2022.

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