In the News

Sep 08, 2016

The Government of Canada is inviting Canadians to participate in a constructive dialogue on our national security framework. This broad consultation is intensifying today with the publication of a discussion paper to prompt debate and input.

This consultation is one part of the government's approach to national security issues. In June, the government also introduced new legislation to create a "National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians" to strengthen scrutiny and accountability of all our security agencies. The government is also working on the establishment of a new national office and centre of excellence to bolster and coordinate community efforts to prevent vulnerable individuals from being radicalized to violence. In addition, it has undertaken a complete re-examination of Canada's cyber-security capabilities.

“Today’s consultation launch is an important step in the development of our national security framework," said Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness. "Our government is committed to engaging Canadians before tabling new legislation that will ensure we maintain our Charter rights while keeping Canadians safe. This consultation is in keeping with our government’s commitments to Canadians on openness and transparency.”

This public consultation will help inform future changes to national security tools, including those introduced in the former Bill C-51. These changes will ensure Canada’s national security framework is effective in keeping Canadians safe, and equally in safeguarding Canadians’ Charter rights in a free and democratic society.

“Today we are moving forward on our commitment to repeal the problematic elements of former Bill C-51, the Anti-terrorism Act, 2015," said  Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould. "Input from Canadians on this Act, and more broadly on Canada’s national security framework, will help inform the development of laws and policies in this important area. Our goal is to ensure the safety of Canadians, while protecting our rights and freedoms.”

The consultation will focus on topics that include terrorism measures in the Criminal Code, information-sharing between national security institutions, as well as measures aimed at investigative capabilities, prevention, and threat reduction.

All Canadians are encouraged to share their views on these topics through the consultation web page, where they can learn more about these important issues and submit their input online. Online submissions will be accepted until December 1, 2016.

The Government of Canada will also be engaging Canadians through several town hall events across Canada over the coming months, and will be seeking the input of experts and interest groups in targeted meetings.

In addition, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security and the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence are being invited to study the issues under consideration.