Canada Announces Support for Law Enforcement Training and Combatting Transnational Crime in the Caribbean

April 30, 2012 - The Honourable Diane Ablonczy, Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas and Consular Affairs), today announced projects totalling $2 million to combat transnational organized crime by supporting law enforcement training and criminal justice reform in the Caribbean.

“Security issues in the Caribbean are of great concern to Canada, and have an impact throughout the hemisphere,” said Minister of State Ablonczy. “Transnational criminal activity not only undermines democracy, prosperity and the rule of law within our hemisphere, but also affects the safety of Canadians and the security of Canadian interests at home and in the region. Insecurity in the hemisphere affects us all; so it is also true that improved security will benefit us all.”

Canada’s contribution is funded by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada’s Anti-Crime Capacity Building Program (ACCBP), launched by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2009. The ACCBP supports countries in the Americas to prevent and respond to threats posed by transnational organized criminal networks operating throughout the western hemisphere. The projects announced today are implemented by Forensic Technology, Inc., Regional Security System of the Eastern Caribbean, and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime Justice Section.

“Strengthening security through capacity building and closer cooperation between countries and partners is an important part of Canada’s engagement in the Caribbean, and is part of our broader commitment to security in the Americas,” said Minister of State Ablonczy.

The Minister of State made the announcement from Barbados, where she is currently accompanying the Governor General of Canada on his visit to the region.

For more information, please visit Anti-Crime Capacity Building Program.

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A backgrounder follows.

For further information, media representatives may contact:

John Babcock
Senior Communications Adviser
Office of the Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas and Consular Affairs)

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
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Backgrounder - Security Capacity Building Programming

Canada is funding the initiatives announced today through the Anti-Crime Capacity Building Program (ACCBP), which focuses on combating drug trafficking, reforming the security sector, promoting anti-corruption measures, and disrupting money laundering in the Americas. The following projects were announced today:

Regional Integrated Ballistic Information Network (RIBIN) for the Caribbean Basin

Implementing partner: Forensic Technology, Inc.
Time frame: November 2011–April 2012
Funding announced: $300,000

Working with the United States, this project establishes a network of integrated ballistic identification systems among member states of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). It seeks to enhance the investigation and prosecution capacities of member states by enabling them to identify and track guns through ballistic identification and information sharing, resulting in strengthened abilities in investigation and prosecution. The total value of this project, led and managed by Canada, is $800,000, which includes $500,000 from the U.S. State Department.

Establishing the Regional Security System Law Enforcement Training Institute

Implementing partner: Regional Security System (RSS) of the Eastern Caribbean
Time frame: April 2011–March 2014
Funding announced: $1.2 million

This project supports the efforts of Eastern Caribbean states to professionalize law enforcement in the region. This project will establish a virtual law enforcement training institute under the RSS, which will train a roster of qualified instructors, develop standardized training materials and promote leadership and executive skills among participating security forces. The total value of this project is $1.2 million.

Promoting Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Reform in Central and South America and the Caribbean

Implementing partner: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime Justice Section, and field offices in the Caribbean and Central and South America
Time frame: December 2011–March 2013
Funding announced: $500,000

Through this project, Canada is providing technical assistance to local police, judicial and prison authorities, as well as to civil society in the Caribbean, and Central and South America. This project seeks to better address vulnerable groups’ needs and concerns about matters such as gender-based violence by supporting the implementation of crime prevention and criminal justice reform strategies in areas such as juvenile justice, restorative justice and community policing. Canada is providing $500,000 in addition to the $542,000 announced in 2011. Canada’s total support for this project is now approximately $1 million.