Minister Mendicino announces new funding of $41.8 million for Quebec to support gun and gang violence prevention initiatives
August 4, 2022
Quebecers deserve to feel safe at home. That is why the Government of Canada is taking action on gun violence, with a comprehensive plan that gets guns off our streets and puts more resources into our communities. The overarching element of our plan is to eliminate the root causes of gun crime. That is why we launched the $250 million Building Safer Communities Fund. First announced in March of 2022, the Fund supports local initiatives to prevent gun violence and help young people make good choices. Gang violence and public shootings are becoming more common in Québec. To help reduce their impact on our streets and in our communities, governments and community organizations must work together and focus on addressing the social conditions that lead to criminality.
Today, the Honourable Marco Mendicino, Minister of Public Safety, together with the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Quebec Lieutenant, announced that the Government of Canada will provide $41.8 million to the Government of Québec, through the Building Safer Communities Fund (BSCF), to support gun and gang violence prevention and intervention activities in municipalities and Indigenous communities across the province where the needs are the greatest. These funds will be used by the Government of Québec to strengthen efforts under the CENTAURE initiative, Québec’s Strategy to Combat Gun Violence. These new investments will support community-led initiatives to tackle the root causes of gun and gang crime, and provide opportunities that help young people make positive life choices, in accordance with the objectives of the BSCF.
No single program or initiative can tackle the challenge of gun and gang violence on its own. That is why the BSCF is one of the many elements of the Government’s comprehensive plan to keep Canadians safe. We also recently introduced Bill C 21 – the most significant action on gun violence in Canada in a generation – which includes major investments at our borders to stop gun smuggling, a proposed “national freeze” on handguns, new proposed “red flag” laws to stop domestic violence, the banning of more than 1,500 models of assault-style firearms, such as the AR-15, and a buyback program, to get guns off of our streets.
“The safety of Quebecers and Canadians is my number one priority. That is why we must continue to invest in grassroots and community initiatives that help young people grow and lead a life free of crime and gun violence. The funding announced today will give Québec the flexibility needed to help each of the recipients tailor their approach and programs to combat gun and gang violence, before it begins.”
- The Honourable Marco Mendicino, Minister of Public Safety
“We know that gun violence will not disappear with a wave of a magic wand. But we also know that prevention among young people, through the expertise of community groups, is part of the solution. There are very positive initiatives in my riding and we must continue in that direction.”
- The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Quebec Lieutenant
“Our government is committed to making our cities and neighbourhoods safer for our families and children. In the last year alone, we have invested over $140M to launch operation CENTAURE and support community initiatives to prevent criminality. I thank the federal government for its openness to entering into this agreement, which will allow for more investment to avoid having our young people drawn to crime.”
- Geneviève Guilbault, Deputy Premier, Minister of Public Safety and Minister Responsible for the Capitale-Nationale Region
“I welcome the funds announced today through the Building Safer Communities Fund. This is a strong signal of the commitment by both levels of government to supporting efforts in our metropolis to prevent gun violence. The safety of our cities is everyone’s business. We firmly believe that, to effectively address urban safety issues, we must work together. We hope that the funds allocated to Montréal will allow us to strengthen our ability, the ability of the SPVM, and the ability of community organizations to support young people by offering them stimulating and safe environments that keep them away from violence. By encouraging cooperation among all partners on the ground, our goal is to implement solutions adapted to our reality to keep Montréal safe.”
- Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montréal
Public Safety Canada is finalizing agreements with municipalities and communities that have been identified through the evidence-based criteria and meet the program requirements.
The amount of BSCF support for a community is based on two major elements: crime severity (homicide by firearm, incidents of firearms offences, organized crime/street gang-involved crime) and population density.
The BSCF builds on the success of the Initiative To Take Action Against Gun and Gang Violence, a $358.8 million investment over five years, announced in 2018, that brings together federal, provincial and territorial supports to tackle the increase in gun-related violence and gang activity in Canada.
The Government of Québec budget allocation prioritizes 10 main urban centres in Quebec, with a greater weighting for Montréal and Laval. The allocation of amounts for municipalities and Indigenous communities also takes into account the number of offences per capita.
The 10 main urban centres with a population of 100,000 or more are Montréal, Laval, Québec, Longueuil, Gatineau, Saguenay, Sherbrooke, Terrebonne, Lévis and Trois-Rivières.
Funding will also be provided to municipalities with populations of less than 100,000 to through an increase to the Programme de soutien aux municipalités en prévention de la criminalité.
The Government of Quebec has begun discussions with the Kativik Regional Government to develop programs adapted for Nunavik.
The Government of Canada is working directly with Kahnawake and Akwesasne.
In 2018 the Government of Canada announced over $46.6 million in funding for Quebec under the Initiative to Take Action Against Gun and Gang Violence (ITAAGGV) to combat gun and gang crime, including $12.9 million in 2021-2022 and $16 million in 2022-2023.
ITAAGGV funding has been used to support many projects, including Project MALSAIN, which has resulted in 121 arrests (as of October 2021) and the seizure of 21 firearms and 42 prohibited firearms in Québec.
CENTAURE, Québec’s Strategy to Combat Gun Violence, is a coordinated approach that focuses on prevention, repression and knowledge and skills development. Cooperation, collaboration and partnerships with cities and organizations on the ground are at the heart of this initiative.
- Gun and Gang Violence
- Homicide in Canada, 2020
- New investments to help end gun and gang violence in Canada
- Youth Gang Prevention Fund
- Backgrounder: Criminal Gun and Gang Violence in Canada
- CENTAURE, Québec’s Strategy to Combat Gun Violence (French only)
- The allocation amounts to Quebec through the Building Safer Communities Fund
Office of the Minister of Public Safety
Public Safety Canada
Office of the Deputy Premier,
Minister of Public Safety and Minister Responsible for the Capitale-Nationale Region
Ministère de la Sécurité publique
418-646-6777, ext. 30274
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