Compliance and enforcement policy for wildlife legislation: chapter 3
Partnership and Public Involvement
The mandate of any governmental organization is based on legislation. The EC wildlife enforcement program must take into account biological principles and conservation priorities and must be undertaken in consultation and partnership with other organizations and the public. Cooperation and shared responsibility with its partners will lay the foundation upon which the enforcement mandate of EC will be fulfilled.
No single individual, group or government can meet Canada's environmental challenges by acting alone.
Fair and Effective Partnership
Wildlife compliance and enforcement programs contribute significantly to overall environmental stewardship and, in particular, to meeting the goals of conservation as described in A Wildlife Policy for Canada. EC ensures that its compliance and enforcement policies and procedures are compatible with those of other enforcement agencies. EC also cooperates with agencies doing research and analysis related to criminology, forensics, and other aspects of enforcement.
Acts and regulations must be applied fairly and consistently within a national policy and procedure framework that recognizes regional variations and respects the unique and special needs of affected parties, especially aboriginal peoples. To achieve natural resource conservation and protection objectives, arrangements are established with partners. Relationships and joint program delivery strategies have been developed with many partners, including provinces and territories, Parks Canada, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Revenue Canada (Customs), and other agencies.
EC is consideratre of the roles and responsibilities of its partners and strives to develop compliance and enforcement policies, programs, and operational procedures that reflect their legal requirements and jurisprudence. These ensure a harmonized delivery of the wildlife compliance and enforcement program.
Fostering Public Involvement
The involvement of an interested, informed, and active public is essential to an effective wildlife compliance and enforcement program. Therefore, EC undertakes activities to educate, inform, consult with and involve the public, including many non-governmental organizations, with regard to natural resource conservation and protection issues.
EC develops information material on the need and the role of a compliance and enforcement program in natural resource conservation and protection. It encourages citizens to contribute to the wildlife compliance and enforcement program. So that programs can be well understood, policies and procedures are written in a non-technical language and are widely circulated to the public. Media involvement helps to ensure the provision of timely, meaningful information on the requirements of wildlife acts and regulations.
The Department encourages the involvement of specialized and active organizations in supporting enforcement actions in ways such as holding of live specimens, identification of species, and development of regulations.
Intergovernmental and Interorganizational Cooperation
Wildlife issues transcend political boundaries. Therefore, close intergovernmental cooperation is essential for the protection of wildlife and its habitat. Environment Canada, on behalf of the Government of Canada, implements a variety of international, national, and regional agreements related to its responsibilities. The Compliance and Enforcement Policy for Wildlife Legislation must accommodate these agreements and provide guidance for their implementation.
EC works closely with the Department of Justice and the Solicitor General to develop and implement enforcement policies.
The wildlife compliance and enforcement program is also guided by other key legislation including the Constitution Act, the Privacy Act, the legislation pertaining to environmental impact assessment and current case law.
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