Question on Prison Closures

  MONDAY, APRIL 23rd, 2012

Mr. Randall Garrison (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, NDP): Mr. Speaker, it looks like this tendency to make it up as you go along is spreading along the front benches on the other side.

    Last week we learned the Conservatives are shutting down two prisons, as well as the Ontario Regional Mental Health Centre, but they have no plan for where the inmates will go. Thousands of the most dangerous offenders in this country, including those with serious mental illnesses, are supposed to be moved to facilities that are already full.

    We can always tell when the Conservatives are trying to hide their mismanagement. They start holding crime photo ops.

    Will the Minister of Public Safety instead table the documents he has based this decision on in the House, or are these reckless cuts simply a result of making up policy on the fly?

    Hon. Vic Toews (Minister of Public Safety, CPC): Mr. Speaker, what irony coming from the NDP members who want to release all of these prisoners right onto the street. Why are they worried about prisoners in prison?

    Canadians gave our government a strong mandate to keep our streets and communities safe. The thrust of our legislation is ensuring that we keep dangerous and repeat offenders behind bars where they belong.

    We are not creating new criminals but merely stopping the revolving door. We have not and will not build any new prisons. In fact, due to a lack of new prisoners, we are closing prisons to save taxpayer money.