Government of Yukon

September 20, 2012

National symposium explores policing in the North

WHITEHORSE—A national symposium exploring the challenges and opportunities of policing in northern and remote Canada wrapped up today in Whitehorse. During the meeting the partners agreed to work together to develop a national research agenda on policing in these areas.

“Keeping Canada’s streets and communities safe is a priority for our government,” Canada’s Public Safety Minister Vic Toews said. “The Symposium on Policing in Northern and Remote Canada offered participants an important opportunity to explore and ultimately implement efficient and effective approaches to keeping Canadians safe in northern and remote Canada. I commend the organizers for their excellent work in preparing for this event, which is an important milestone leading to the National Summit on the Economics of Policing in January 2013.”

“The symposium was an excellent opportunity for collaborative dialogue and discussion on the challenges and opportunities of northern policing,” Justice Minister Mike Nixon said. “The policing symposium is just one way that agencies work together to build partnerships, solve common problems, share innovative ideas and help each other move towards police services that meet the needs of our unique communities.”

“We are pleased that we were able to share our expertise from the Northwest Territories with our northern partners and others from across Canada,” Northwest Territories Justice Minister Glen Abernethy said. “The sharing of information and best practices enriches all.”

“The symposium is ultimately the result of a recommendation stemming from the Sharing Common Ground report that Council of Yukon First Nations co-chaired,” CYFN Grand Chief Ruth Massie said. “We are pleased to be a partner in this conference which has helped identify gaps and priorities for policing in northern and remote communities where many unique challenges exist.” 

“This event is another important step in the work being done to build and strengthen relationships between communities and police,” Chief Superintendent Peter Clark, Commanding Officer of the RCMP in Yukon said. “It’s a great example of the vision and commitment of governments, agencies and organizations to come together and collaborate on achieving the common goal of making our communities safer and stronger.”

“It has been exciting to hear about new initiatives and innovative practices from many different perspectives these past two days,” Northern Institute of Social Justice executive director Joanne Lewis at Yukon College said. “We are looking forward to moving ahead with our partners on a national research agenda that will support policing and best practices in northern and remote communities across Canada.”

Over 100 delegates from across the country attended the conference which included  presentations and discussions on the operational realities of providing service in the North, innovative approaches to collaborating with community members and First Nations, and strategies to attract and retain skilled police officers.  

The symposium was hosted by the Government of Yukon in partnership with the Northern Institute of Social Justice, Government of the Northwest Territories, Council of Yukon First Nations, RCMP M Division and National Headquarters, and Public Safety Canada.

For more information about the symposium, visit



Elaine Schiman
Cabinet Communications
Government of Yukon


Shari-Lynn MacLellan
Communications, Justice
Government of Yukon

Michael Vernon
Yukon College
867- 668-8786


Sue Glowach
Senior Communications Advisor, Justice  Government of Northwest Territories

David Gilbert  
Yukon RCMP 


Media Relations
Public Safety Canada


Amanda Leslie
Council of Yukon First Nations



News Release #12-171