Dr. James Young named Commissioner of Emergency Management

Archived Release

Dr. James Young named Commissioner of Emergency Management

Ministry of the Solicitor General

New post means a stronger, safer Ontario QUEEN'S PARK, April 30 - As part of the McGuinty government's commitment to improve community safety, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services Monte Kwinter today announced the appointment of Dr. James Young to the newly created post of Commissioner of Emergency Management. "Strong, safe communities are a priority of the McGuinty government," Kwinter said. "Dr. Young's appointment addresses the need for an overall leader responsible for planning for and responding to all emergencies in Ontario." In his new role, Dr. Young will report directly to the Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services on all policy and program matters related to emergency management in the Ontario government. In addition, he will: - Oversee the province's emergency planning and preparedness to ensure continuity of government and essential services and safety for citizens; - Monitor ongoing emergency situations, such as the current avian influenza outbreak in Asia and North America, to ensure that Ontario is prepared to respond should a similar situation occur here; - Take the lead in working with the federal government on the co-location of an emergency management centre in Ontario and on negotiating an agreement to ensure cooperation and collaboration on emergency response measures; - Lead the development of necessary regulations to implement emergency management across key government ministries; and - Assist in the review of the existing Emergency Management Act and related legislation and regulations to ensure that the government has all of the powers and tools necessary to respond to an increasingly wide range of potential emergencies. "Ontario has faced a number of challenges over the last few years," Dr. Young said. "My job will entail working with the provincial government and across all other levels of government to ensure we are prepared for all possible emergencies, however caused." Backgrounder ------------------------------------------------------------------------- April 30, 2004 SUMMARY OF DR. JAMES YOUNG'S CAREER Dr. James Young's appointment as Commissioner of Emergency Management is the latest in a number of increasingly important positions he has held since joining the Ontario Public Service. Background: - 1977 - 1982 Investigative Coroner, Simcoe County; - 1982 - 1985 Regional Coroner, Metropolitan Toronto; - 1985 - 1989 Regional Coroner, Central Region; - 1989 - 1992 Deputy Chief Coroner, province of Ontario; - 1992 - April 2004 Chief Coroner, province of Ontario; - 1994 - April 2004 Assistant Deputy Minister, Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services; - 2002 - April 2004 Commissioner of Public Safety and Security, province of Ontario - April 2004 Commissioner of Emergency Management Academics: - 1975 - University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine; - April 1994 - present - Associate Professor, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology at the University of Toronto; - April 2001 - present - Associate Professor in Forensic Sciences, University of Toronto (Erindale) Some of Dr. Young's other accomplishments include: - Playing an instrumental leadership role during Ontario's response to the outbreak of SARS; - Conducting an independent investigation into the death of a young woman who died in custody in Kazakhstan (December 2002), at the request of the federal Department of Foreign Affairs; - Identifying Canadians who died in terrorist bombings in Bali and assisting in the international forensic investigation on behalf of the Canadian government (October 2002); - Arranging and overseeing the autopsies for four Canadian soldiers killed in Afghanistan under friendly fire by the United States (April 2002); and - Leading a five-member international medical team to determine the cause and manner of death of Chief Moshood Abiola. Chief Abiola was the elected Nigerian President and had been imprisoned before he could take office (July 1998). He was appointed chief medical, emergency and forensic services adviser for the Canadian Consulate General in New York after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Dr. Young was recently awarded the President's Award from the College of Physicians and Surgeons for his role in the SARS outbreak. He is also a member of the Canada-U.S. Power Blackout Task Force and an ex-officio member of the Walker Commission looking into the SARS situation. Disponible en fran├žais www.mpss.jus.gov.on.caFor further information: Adrian Dafoe, Minister's Office, (416) 325-4973, (416) 998-2829 (cellular); Bruce O'Neill, Communications Branch, (416) 326-5005