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QUEBEC CITY, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - Jan 21, 2016) - Today, federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for justice and public safety concluded a one-day meeting to discuss justice and public safety priorities for Canadians.
With a new federal government and a number of new provincial and territorial governments, this meeting was an opportunity to build new relationships and outline key issues that they will work on together.
The Ministers' meeting began with a prayer led by a Huron-Wandat elder, and observed a moment of silence to collectively express their mutual grief for the seven Quebeckers recently killed in terrorist attacks in Jakarta and Burkina Faso.
The ministers focused on items of shared priority such as violence against Indigenous women and girls, reconciliation, physician-assisted dying, countering radicalization, cyber security, and financing an innovative justice system.
Ministers discussed the issue of reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples, informed by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Calls to Action and agreed on the need to address related issues, such as First Nations Policing.
Recognizing the need to take immediate action to address violence against Indigenous women and girls, ministers articulated strong support for the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and approved the Justice Framework to Address Violence Against Indigenous Women and Girls. The ministers acknowledged that the Justice Framework, which is informed by numerous reports and discussions with Indigenous Peoples, can be updated to incorporate additional findings, including those from the National Inquiry.
Ministers agreed to continue their important collaboration, including putting the Justice Framework into action in accordance with jurisdictional priorities. In addition, they recognized that work must continue across the country to resolve outstanding cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, and to improve services and supports to victims and their families.
Ministers also emphasized that collaboration is essential to the effectiveness of Canada's approach to countering radicalization to violence. Ministers committed to supporting the development of a framework for countering radicalization to violence, to coordinate efforts, share information and best practices, and identify priorities. Ministers also agreed to share information and best practices on cyber security.
Ministers discussed a range of innovative initiatives underway to deliver more efficient and effective programs and services for Canadians. They committed to meet again in the fall to follow up and collaborate on these and other key issues of importance to all jurisdictions.
"I am very pleased to have this early opportunity to meet with my provincial and territorial colleagues to build positive relationships and help set a tone of constructive collaboration on justice issues that are important to Canadians. Close engagement with our provincial and territorial partners will be critical to delivering the real and positive change that our Government has promised Canadians."
- Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
"The safety of Canadians and the safeguarding of their values are of utmost importance to our government and are priorities for all orders of government. This first meeting of provincial and territorial Ministers was an important opportunity to discuss public safety priorities we will collaborate on for the benefit of all Canadians. We had productive discussions today and I look forward to continuing in this positive direction."
- Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness of Canada
"Today's meeting has allowed us to set the stage for a collaboration on justice-related matters that is based on open federalism. Quebec has seized on this opportunity to reiterate its priorities and share its concerns, particularly with regard to addressing violence against Indigenous women and girls, and financing justice and legal aid. This day was also an opportunity for Quebec to share the expertise that it has acquired in enacting its Act respecting end-of-life care and establishing a framework for medical aid in dying."
- Stéphanie Vallée, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Quebec
"We are deeply concerned by new developments in security-related issues that affect us all, such as cyber security and counter-radicalization to violence. Thanks to our shared commitment to facing these new challenges, we will adapt our approaches and find innovative solutions. I am convinced that our productive exchanges, a spirit of openness and the sharing of best practices will lead to significant concrete initiatives in public safety and justice."
- Pierre Moreau, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Land Occupancy and Acting Minister of Public Security of Quebec
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