To mark Crime Prevention Month, the Manitoba government is investing in crime prevention and community outreach programs including $91,000 to support the ongoing work of Crime Stoppers and more than $131,000 for crime prevention programs led by the Manitoba RCMP, Justice Minister Cliff Cullen announced today.
“Our government continues to make strategic investments that support public safety and help to reduce crime,” said Cullen. “We are proud to partner with Crime Stoppers, police agencies and community members to ensure they have everything they need to keep Manitobans safe.”
The RCMP received funding to send three young adults and their chaperones to the Manitoba Criminal Justice Association crime prevention workshop, which is being held in Winnipeg Nov. 2. Participants will have the opportunity to share concerns from their community, exchange ideas with others, learn about crime prevention strategies and problems connected to drugs and criminal behaviour, and then bring what they’ve learned home to their communities. Representatives include a criminal justice and political science student from Dakota Tipi First Nation, a youth committee member of the Manitoba Metis Federation – Northwest Region, and a youth committee member of the Manitoba Metis Federation – Winnipeg Region.
“Crime prevention is so important to what we do,” said Assistant Commissioner Scott Kolody, commanding officer of the RCMP in Manitoba. “The ability to reach youth and help them establish strong foundations and community relationships before they get involved in high-risk behaviours is a win for everyone. This valuable funding from the province helps us implement programs that focus on youth and crime prevention, benefitting communities as a whole.”
Winnipeg Crime Stoppers will receive $30,000 to produce videos, design transit and outdoor signage for high-crime areas and develop other materials for community outreach. A vehicle valued at approximately $40,000 forfeited to the province this year as proceeds of crime was donated to Winnipeg Crime Stoppers. It will be part of the organization’s community outreach activities. The Manitoba government regularly donates seized items such as hydroponics equipment to community or school gardens, but this is the first vehicle donated through the program.
“Winnipeg Crime Stoppers has been successfully solving crimes in Winnipeg since 1984,” said Paul Johnson, chair. “This grant will be used to increase awareness of the Crime Stopper program, allowing us to continue our work creating safer communities. The vehicle will serve as a visual reminder that a life of crime has consequence.”
Brandon Crime Stoppers and Manitoba Crime Stoppers will also receive $10,000 and $11,000 respectively to fund community outreach materials, equipment and to support the awards program for callers who provide information.
Other RCMP crime prevention and community safety initiatives funded through the criminal property forfeiture fund this year include:
• $12,000 for youth involved in the Duke of Edinburgh program, designed to help those who have been in contact with the law make more positive life choices through outdoor activities, art and music;
• $55,500 to support a partnership between Girl Guides of Canada and Shamattawa First Nation, which ensured 35 girls aged six to eight and their chaperones could attend a summer camp focused on mentorship, leadership and empowerment;
• $10,000 to support the Liberty FC soccer team in Winnipeg with equipment and related costs, creating a positive opportunity for recent newcomers to participate in sport and the community;
• $8,200 to provide the Walk Away, Ignore, Talk It Out, Seek Help (WITS) anti-bullying program for children in kindergarten to Grade 6 to eight schools next spring;
• $18,000 to purchase and distribute 600 bicycle helmets to students at OK Elementary School in Nelson House; and
• $16,000 to support a multi-day canoe trip for youth in Cross Lake to establish stronger connections within the community and help participants build self-confidence and promote respect for themselves, elders, the outdoors and the community.
The minister noted more than $1.4 million will be distributed this year through the Criminal Property Forfeiture Fund. Since 2010, more than $19 million in assets have been successfully forfeited to Manitoba through criminal property forfeitures.