Dewar's focus on crime prevention will win new voters
"A stronger and more caring Canada is a Canada where everyone is safe at home and in their communities. But Stephen Harper's approach has a proven track record of failing our communities and leaving the government deeper in debt," said Dewar during a campaign stop in Surrey, BC. "My focus will be on preventing crimes and actually making our communities safer. It's a strategy that will attract more voters to the NDP right here in BC."
Dewar announced his priorities for public safety at Surrey's Trilogy House One, an assisted living home for individuals recovering from addictions which has assisted over three hundred people to get clean and sober since 2007. The cost of services for a person in Trilogy House One is just over $11,000. According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, if the same person committed a crime, incarceration would cost over $84,000 at the provincial/territorial level and over $147,000 at the federal level.
"Addiction treatment centres are providing real crime prevention by helping people overcome their challenges rather than fall into criminality," said Dewar. "Prevention is not just the better way of ensuring public safety, it's the more cost-effective way."
As leader of Canada's NDP Paul Dewar would make communities safer by:
- emphasizing treatment and prevention, instead of mandatory sentencing, as the best approach to reducing drug related crime
- working with provinces to ensure recovering addicts have adequate housing and transition support services available to them
- ensuring policy advisory processes include the voices of independent experts, practitioners, and those with addiction experience
- cracking down on the importation and smuggling of illegal hand guns
- increasing support for the National Crime Prevention Centre and Youth Gang Prevention Fund
- addressing the over-representation of Aboriginal peoples in Canada's criminal justice system
- supporting communities in addressing their policing needs
Dewar went on to say that crime and safer communities has been a political wedge for the Harper Conservatives for too long. He says under his leadership the NDP will take on Harper's crime and punishment agenda and make safer communities a strong focus for the NDP in the next election.
"Harper's approach of building jails and filling them to capacity is fundamentally flawed. It failed in the US and wasted resources that could have gone to treatment and prevention," said Dewar. "Canadians know this. The NDP must not be afraid of crime as an issue. We must put forward a strong agenda and let families know that our policies will make their communities safer."
"My approach is less expensive and more effective. It makes our communities better places to live," Dewar said.