Several Conservative MPs met with Alberta’s Justice Minister looking to find solutions for rural crime in Alberta.
Blaine Calkins, MP for Red Deer – Lacombe, and Conservative Members of Parliament from rural ridings met with the Hon. Doug Schweitzer, Minister of Justice and Solicitor General of Alberta to discuss the UCP government’s recent announcements to combat rural crime, and potential federal measures that could be implemented.
“Rural crime has reached a crisis point in Alberta, and it’s clear that we need a all levels of government to work collaboratively to combat it,” said Calkins. “When you get to a point where victims no longer feel it’s worthwhile to report a crime, it’s obvious that the status quo isn’t working.”
In the 42nd Parliament Calkins put forward legislation aimed at targeting criminals who target rural Canadians by adding aggravating factors that a judge must consider at sentencing. It did not progress through Parliament prior to the election.
“The UCP government has introduced a number of commendable initiatives to help tackle this incredibly serious issue, and I look forward to seeing how they benefit our communities,” said Calkins. “While it’s great to have such a dedicated partner working on the issue provincially, there are several issues that must be addressed by the federal government, which is why today’s meeting was so important.”
Calkins said the justice system is a revolving door for criminals targeting rural areas.
“We need to fix the system so that prison time is meaningful for individuals who continually and specifically target rural Canadians because of their distance from emergency services. I look forward to working with my Conservative colleagues to accomplish this.”
-With Files from MP Blaine Calkins