Surrey: Ensuring the safety of Surrey’s neighbourhoods is a top priority for Surrey’s Members of Parliament, John Aldag, Sukh Dhaliwal, Ken Hardie, Gordie Hogg and Randeep Sarai. This was the primary purpose of roundtable with Mark Holland, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Public Safety Minister.
At this roundtable, the MP’s along with their provincial and municipal counterparts discussed the measures that have been taken to date, as well as new resources and supports that are required to boost prevention, intervention, and enforcement measures to tackle gun and gang violence in Surrey.
In Budget 2018, more than 300 million dollars were allocated over the next five years and $100 million annually after that, which will be permanent funding towards community programs, law enforcement and border operations that are focused on reducing gun and gang violence across Canada. While the MP’s are pleased to see this significant investment, they made it clear, Surrey must receive an increased level of funding to ensure we have the resources to support community programs, and police operations on this issue.
At this roundtable, members from various community organizations, Surrey School Board, City of Surrey Gang Task Force, Surrey RCMP, CFSEU, and representatives from the Ministry of Children and Families were on hand to share the work that is being done to prevent children from entering gang life, and the tools and resources that are needed to support this work.
This team of local MP’s ended yesterday’s meeting by hearing directly from local families from the lower mainland on the toll this has had on their families. The MP’s, as well as Mark Holland, are resolved to carry forward the ideas, suggestions, and solutions on this issue to bring about a real difference in our community, led by our B.C. Caucus Chair, Gordie Hogg. In the coming months, they expect the funding supports to arrive at the approved applicants.
“Addressing the issue of gang violence in our communities is paramount to ensuring the safety of our children and families in our neighbourhoods. Yesterday’s roundtable discussion with Parliamentary Secretary Mark Holland was a step forward in ensuring just that. With all three levels of government, community organizations and local citizens present and working together, we can continue to make meaningful strides in the fight against gang violence in Surrey,” said John Aldag, MP Cloverdale – Langley City.
“There is nothing more important that making sure our city is safe for the families and children that live here. I was pleased to hear the constructive ideas and solutions put forward by passionate experts on this matter. By working together from every level of government, to every community organization, and every citizen, we can make a real difference. I want to thank Mark Holland, for visiting Surrey to hear our concerns and supporting the communities efforts,” said Sukh Dhaliwal, MP Surrey – Newton.
“The community is clearly motivated and ready to work together and make progress on the guns and gangs issue. We heard clearly that this will need to be a coordinated partnership between all the agencies who, on their own, are doing great work, but see the need to synchronize their programs. And we’re hearing that parents are ready to be in this partnership. Parliamentary Secretary Holland is taking a message back to Ottawa that Surrey won’t accept the status quo anymore, and that federal support is critical to drive the improvements we all want to see. My colleagues and I will reinforce that message at every opportunity,” said Ken Hardie, MP Fleetwood – Port Kells.
“The toll gang violence has taken on the families of our community is simply unacceptable. I`m heartened to see my colleagues from the municipal, provincial and federal levels of government come together with the numerous agencies and organizations providing frontline support to them. With guidance from our families who have experienced unimaginable pain and loss, we must all work together to turn the tide,” said Gordie Hogg, MP Surrey-White Rock
“Keeping our families and communities safe is the utmost priority for the Surrey Members of Parliament as well as our community at large. After our numerous meetings with concerned citizens and parents directly affected, community stakeholders and organizations, law enforcement, places of worship, and all levels of government, it is clear that there is deeply vested interest by all of these groups to work together to end the gun and gang violence in the lower mainland. With all on board, we can expect to see increased action and support for this issue, particularly a greater emphasis to supplement funding in Surrey. Alongside Mark Holland, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Public Safety Minister, your Surrey MPs will continue to actively work on providing a promising and safer future,” said Randeep Sarai, MP Surrey – Centre.