Garrison says he has plenty of work to do as new public safety critic

“My role is to be the NDP spokesperson for what the minister has and hasn’t done,” Garrison said about shadowing Conservative MP Vic Toews

Watch out secret police, Esquimalt-Juan de Fuca MP Randall Garrison, has his eyes on you.

Garrison has been appointed Public Safety Critic for the Official Opposition.

“My role is to be the NDP spokesperson for what the minister has and hasn’t done,” Garrison said about shadowing Conservative MP Vic Toews, Minister of Public Safety.

Garrison was appointed to the position at the end of April by NDP leader Thomas Mulcair.

Royal Roads University associate professor Michael Young was pleased when he heard Garrison was appointed. Young teaches the justice studies program at the university and is a former co-worker of Garrison’s.

Prior to being elected MP, Garrison was an instructor of criminal justice and political science at Camosun College. Young, also with a background in criminology, taught at the college for nearly 10 years.

“He is well read on the system and he knows where they hiccups are,” Young said.

A key feature Garrison hopes to investigate is the elimination of the inspector general for the Canadian Security Intelligence Service. The position was nixed in the Conservative’s last budget, introduced in April.

Without this position, no one outside of CSIS itself will know what the agency is doing, Garrison said.

“CSIS is the secret police,” Garrison said, stressing the importance of a civilian watchdog even though the work CSIS does is vitally important to national security.

Garrison is also concerned about cuts to RCMP Post Traumatic Stress Disorder programs.

“Vic Toews is saying they have adequate (programs still available), but I say ‘why did you have programs (in the first place) to be eliminated then?’” Garrison said.

Many of the issues he’ll be dealing with affect this region on a local level.

William Head Institution, a federal prison in Metchosin, is one. Border security is another.

Young thinks it’s a good idea to keep a watchful eye on prisons, especially William Head. He is concerned at some point the institution’s prison population may increase.

“At the moment this is the last stop for offenders … it helps normalize them,” Young said. “If we start putting in other offenders (who are not at the same level of rehabilitation) it jeopardizes the people who are ready to go.”

Just Posted

WANTED: VicPD seeks car owner in assault investigation

Driver of Hyandai Santa Fe described as 6 foot Caucasian male, late 30s

Saanich makes appeal for regional fire dispatch system

Five CRD communities drop Saanich service in favour of Surrey

‘Not well thought out:’ Arizona family slams B.C. speculation tax

American family spends half the year in vacation home on Vancouver Island

Giants draw first blood in WHL playoff series vs. Victoria

Home ice advantage non-existent for Royals against arch-rival Vancouver

New Galloping Goose overpass at McKenzie could open next week

Drivers reminded to watch the road in McKenzie construction zone

Vancouver Island’s Best Videos of the Week

A look at some of the best video stories from the past week ending March 23, 2018

Saanich invites input on garden suites

Early returns suggest support for the legalization of garden suites, but the… Continue reading

Health officials called after acid spill near B.C.-Alberta border leaks into creek

Tanker truck crashed south of Dawson Creek, spilling 17,000 litres of hydrochloric acid

Embattled band Hedley plays last show in B.C. before hiatus

About 3,000 tickets had sold for final performance at Kelowna’s Prospera Place

Trudeau to exonerate B.C. First Nations chiefs hanged in 1860s

Prime Minister to absolve Tsilhqot’in chiefs in relation to deaths of 14 construction workers

Canucks sing the Blues as they fall to St. Louis 4-1

Berglund nets two, including the game-winner, to lift St. Louis over Vancouver

Calving season brings hope for Cariboo ranchers

Still a lot of work ahead to recover from the wildfires

Canada’s Kaetlyn Osmond wins figure skating world title

The 22-year-old fwon the women’s singles crown with her Black Swan routine

Vancouver Island pooches celebrate National Puppy Day

Check out some of the submissions we received from around the region

Most Read