Lakeland MP Shannon Stubbs says there are two streams of focus in her new role as Shadow Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.
In the near term, she sees herself focusing on border crossings and “the work of CBSA agents as decisions get made about opening up the borders and travel and trade through the pandemic.”
Another key concern is the ban of assault-style weapons through an order in council by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau earlier this year.
According to Public Safety Canada, the ban includes over 1500 models, as well as “the upper receivers of M16, AR-10, AR-15, and M4 patterns of firearms” and introduces maximum thresholds for muzzle energy and bore diameter.
“Law abiding, innocent, Canadian firearms owners, sport shooters, collectors, hunters, farmers; should not be targeted by legislation. The government’s priority should be on stopping the illegal smuggling and importation and trading of illegal guns. As well as beefing up the CBSA resources, particularly to deal with firearms smuggling,” said Stubbs.
She said there’s also the bigger philosophical issues about public safety which need to be addressed.
“I think one of the biggest threats to the public and economic security of Canada and people of free and democratic countries is China,” said Stubbs, who co-authored an opinion piece about the risk to Canadian workers and business.
In keeping with her previous motion M-167, which called for action to combat rural crime, Stubbs said she plans to bring elements of the motion back to the Public Safety committee to be addressed.
The motion was passed in the House of Commons and sent to committee, but when Justin Trudeau prorogued Parliament on Aug. 18 all the committees were disbanded and their work stopped.
“I talked about examining resources for victims of crime, and I asked for a comprehensive analysis of the existing resources and relationships and effectiveness and strategies of policing between federal, provincial, municipal, and indigenous forces,” said Stubbs, noting that her motion had received unanimous support before being sent to the committee.
“It was not done when the public safety committee took it up.”
Also on her radar for committee work when Parliament resumes on Sept. 23, are a close study of any recommendations from Justice Minister David Lametti and Public Safety Minister Bill Blair.
On July 8, the Prime Minister asked Lametti to examine possible reforms to the legal system, while Blair was tasked with a modernization of police structures and updating standards regarding use of force.
“I’d like to see the outcome of that work plan and get in to the details of what concrete recommendations or next steps they actually have,” said Stubbs.
Stubbs said she plans to bring back the study of Corrections Canada and how Eustachio Gallese, a high-risk offender convicted of killing his partner, was permitted to meet women for sexual purposes while on day parole.
The decision resulted in the death of 22-year old Marylene Levesque.
“The committee was in the middle of that study and then it was sidelined for a study on systemic racism, which also ended because of the suspension of Parliament,” said Stubbs.
Asked about racialized views on rural crime within the Lakeland riding, Stubbs said the concerns and the frustrations are the same across the riding.
“When I go to the indigenous communities in Lakeland, they are just as worried about their safety and their security and criminal activity in their communities as are the rural residents of the riding. And they deserve, frankly, to have the same peace and safety and security as every other Canadian does,” said Stubbs.
“There are all kinds of challenges in terms of the resourcing and the relationships between first responders, RCMP, mental health supports, domestic violence supports, front line victim services, supports for families. These are all issues that are inter-related,” said Stubbs.