New anti-disaster program to be established in Regina
Posted: Jun 18, 2012 12:20 PM CST
Last Updated: Jun 18, 2012 7:16 PM CST
The federal government is setting up a new security and safety program, to be based in Regina, to co-ordinate research into dealing with disasters and emergencies.
The Canadian Safety and Security Program will pull science and technology together with operations and intelligence to predict and prepare for natural disasters, pandemics and even terrorist attacks, the government says.
"Regina is the natural place in the country for this investment," Marc Fortin, the assistant deputy defence minister responsible for science and technology, told CBC News on Monday.
"Regina has many assets — number one, of course, [is] the RCMP depot, which is unique in the country."
The Regina centre, which will be located on the second floor of a new building on 11th Avenue near Broad Street, is scheduled to open in two weeks, employing 16 people.
Officials say the program will cost $43.5 million a year to operate.
It will work with Defence Research and Development Canada to improve the country's ability to detect chemical, biological, radiological and explosives threats.
It will also work on border and transportation security, emergency management, surveillance and intelligence, cybersecurity, interoperability and critical infrastructure.
Fortin said the agency's goal is "to create, at the end of the day, resilient communities … that can respond and recover quickly from disasters or threats."
Corrections and Clarifications
- An earlier version of this story said the new agency would co-ordinate responses to disasters and emergencies when, in fact, the agency will co-ordinate research into those areas. June 19|7:30 p.m. CST
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